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Family Ophioglossaceae
Ribbon fern
Ophioglossum pendulum Linn.

Scientific names Common names
Ophioderma pendula C.Presl.         Unresolved Adder's tongue fern (Engl.)
Ophioglossum pendulum Linn. Hanging adder's-tongue fern (Engl.)
Infraspecific taxa Old world adder's tongue (Engl.)
Ophioglossum pendulum subsp. falcatum (C.Presl) R.T.Clausen Ribbon fern (Engl.)
Ophioglossum pendulum L. is an accepted name. The Plant List

Other vernacular names
INDONESIA: Simbar gadang, Kumpai lubang.
MALAYSIA: Daun rambut.
THAILAND: Teen mue nok khao.

Ophioglossum pendulum is an epiphytic fern. Leaves are 1-6 clustered, long, pendant, ribbon-like, up to 120 centimeters long and 2.5 centimeters wide, one to several times forked, and with undulating margins. Fertile stalk is with strobilus to 15 centimeters long, attached near the base of leaf blade, bearing two rows of sporangia. Sporangia open by a transverse slit, releasing many creamy white spores. Spores are globose, trilete, about 50 µm in diameters, finely irregularly goose.

- Usually on trunks and branches of trees in damp primary forests.
- Occasionally planted as ornamental.
- Widely distributed in the tropics.

Parts used


- In Mindanao, infusion of leaves used a cough remedy. Spores used in newborn to rid them of zirconium. (5)
- In Moore, French Polynesia, plant used for indigestion. (1)
- In India, fronds used in the form of a scalp ointment to improve hair growth.
- In Malaysia, juice of leaves used by the Telemann tribe as shampoo to clean and treat hair.

No studies found.


Updated December 2017 / July 2016
May 2011

IMAGE SOURCE: Public Domain / File:014 Ophioglossum pendulum koburan.jpg / Japanese pictorial book of flora / Michio Murakoshi (1872-1948) / Wikimedia Commons
IMAGE SOURCE: 47110 Ophioglossum pendulum L. / Ophioglossaceae / W.J. Hooker, R.K. Greville, Icones filicum, vol. 1, t. 19 (1831) / Dr. Greville / Plant Illustrations.Org

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Medical Ethnobotany, Phytochemistry, and Bioactivity of the Ferns of Moorea, French Polynesia / Nicole Baltrushes, May 2006
Ophioglossum pendulum / Indian Medicinal Plants: An Illustrated Dictionary / C. P. Khare / Google books
A Review on the Potential Uses of Ferns / M Mannar Mannan, M Maridass and B Victor / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 281-285. 2008.
The Use of Medicinal Plant Species by the Temuan Tribe of Ayer HitamForest, Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia / I Faridah Hanum and Nurulhuda Hamzah / PertanikaJ. Trap. Agric. Sci. 22(2): 85 -94 (1999)
Ophioglossum pendulum / Synonyms and common names / PROSEA: Plant Resources of South-East Asia
Ophioglossum pendulum / Synonyms / The Plant List

It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page.

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