Abstract

Rhizome and foliar anatomy of the Mexican Dryopteris Adans. species were studied and compared with other Dryopteridaceae and other fern families to identify anatomical features with diagnostic value. The anatomy of rhizome, stipe, and blade is similar in species of the Dryopteris patula complex. The cells with un-lignified, thickened wall, with cap or U-shape around the meristeles belong to the collenchyma, in contrast with other fern families. Dryopteris wallichiana (Spreng.) Hyl. is anatomically distinguished from the other studied species by having more layers of sclerenchyma and meristeles on the stipe, and by the lack of sclereid nests on the rhizome. Dryopteris rossii C. Chr. and D. maxonii Underw. & C. Chr. are characterized by the presence of crystals on the periphery of rhizome nests. D. maxonni and D. wallichiana lack blade glands.