The Chinese Ladder Fern

The Chinese Ladder Fern (Pteris vittata) grows wildly in our yard, they grow in almost every nook and corner.Chinese ladder fernThe Chinese ladder fern is also known as Chinese brake, Chinese ladder brake  and ladder brake fern. It grows well in shady areas and is poisonous if eaten.

This fern plant is beneficial as it is a hyperaccumulator. A hyperaccumulator is a plant capable of growing in soils with very high concentrations of metals, absorbing these metals through their roots, and concentrating extremely high levels of metals in their tissues. Chinese Brake fernHyperaccumulating plants, like our Chinese brake fern, are known for their ability to extract metals from the soils of contaminated sites (i.e. from soils contaminated with lead, uranium, and arsenic)  to return the ecosystem to a less toxic state.

 

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