Black Stemmed Spleenwort Fern - Asplenium resilient
Black stemmed spleenwort fern is a perennial species of fern native to the western hemisphere. It can be found anywhere in the southern United States and Mexico all the way down in southern Uruguay. It is considered a critically endangered species throughout most of the United States. However, it can still be commonly found in Nuevo León and Coahuila. Black stemmed spleenwort fern has compound leaves, meaning the leaves are small and grow all along the plant's stems. The black stemmed spleenwort fern is considered small by ordinary fern standards, and its leaves are short and circular compared to most other ferns. The branches of the fern can grow anywhere between 6 - 12 inches long. The black stemmed spleenwort fern gets its name from its black stems. These black stems help highlight the fern's leaves, which are a vibrant shade of green. Although ferns do not flower, the black and green add a refreshing range of color to the fern family.
Black stemmed spleenwort ferns prefer lightly shaded to entirely shaded areas. It is somewhat unusual in that it enjoys rocky environments. It especially likes growing on the surfaces of alkaline rocks or limestone. It is rare to see this plant growing in soil. These ferns are drought resistant, and also grow well at high altitudes, although slightly smaller than their lower altitude counterparts. Black stemmed spleenwort ferns are known to grow in gravelly conditions considered unsuitable for most other plants.
If you are living in a high altitude area, and are having trouble getting plants to grow, black stemmed spleenwort ferns are a great solution. If you leave near sinkholes or alkaline rock formations that prevent garden growth, these ferns will flourish. They are very hardy, low maintenance, require little water, and a great addition to rock gardens.