Hart's-tongue - Asplenium scolopendrium

Alternative names
Hart's Tongue Fern, Phyllitis scolopendrium

Unique amongst British ferns in having strap-shaped, evergreen, undivided leaves. It is a tufted plant with fronds 10 to 60 cm long and 3 to 6 cm wide, rich, glossy green above with stems up to half the length of the leaf blade. Sori are linear 1 to 3 cm long borne in pairs.

Identification difficulty

Damp and shady places, woods, hills and banks, walls and rocks.

When to see it

All year round but spores ripen July and August.

Life History

Perennial and evergreen.

UK Status

Frequent throughout most of Britain except Northern Scotland.

VC55 Status

Fairly frequent in damp shady places in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 76 of the 617 tetrads.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map