fern

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fern

Chinese medicine
Any of a number of ferns (Aspidium falcatum, Dryopteris crassirhizoma, Nephrodium filix, Onoclea orientalis, Woodwardia radicans), the rhizomes of which are used in traditional Chinese medicine; all are referred to guan jung (guan zhong), and thus not differentiated by genus or species. Ferns are anti-inflammatory, anthelmintic and haemostatic, and are used for abscesses, menorrhagia, leukorrhoea, intestinal parasites and thyroiditis.

fern

any pteridophyte plant of the class filicinae, subdivision Pteropsida of the division Tracheophyta, at one time classified in the division Pteridophyta. The ferns constitute the great majority of species in the division and possess large, conspicuous aerial DIPLOID (2) stems. Sporangia are borne on the underside of leaves and the HAPLOID (2) spores usually give rise to homosporous prothalli which carry both ANTHERIDIA and ARCHEGONIA. There is a small group of heterosporous aquatic ferns (see HETEROSPORY).

fern

a terrestrial vascular plant of the order Filicales; reproduction is through spores. A few ferns are poisonous. See pteridium aquilinum, equisetum, cheilanthes, dryopteris. Called also pteridophyte.