*The following is based on Gann, G.D., K.A. Bradley & S.W. Woodmansee. 2002. Rare Plants of South Florida: Their History, Conservation, and Restoration. The Institute for Regional Conservation: Miami. For updated species accounts, see Citation below. For the original text, follow the link in the Update field. If no Update field is displayed, then cite as the original publication.


Hypolepis repens (L.) K. Presl

Creeping bramble fern


South Florida Status: Extirpated. Collected once in 1964 on Ramrod Key in Monroe County.

Taxonomy: Pteridophyte; Dennstaedtiaceae.

Habit: Perennial terrestrial herb.

Distribution: Native to peninsular Florida, the West Indies, Mexico, Central America, and South America. Wunderlin (1998) reports it as occasional in peninsular Florida.

South Florida Distribution: Monroe County Keys. Reported in error for Miami-Dade County by Lakela & Long (1976).

South Florida Habitats: Limestone sinkholes.

Protection Status: Not listed by any agency.

Aids to Identification: Tobe et al. (1998) has color photos and an illustration; Nelson (2000) has color photos; Wunderlin & Hansen (2000) has an illustration; the IRC Website has a color photo.

References: Small, 1931b; Small, 1938; Flora of North America Editorial Committee, 1993; Lakela & Long, 1976; Long & Lakela, 1976; Wunderlin, 1998; Tobe et al., 1998; Liogier & Martorell, 2000; Nelson, 2000; Wunderlin & Hansen, 2000.

Synonyms: None.



Historical Context: Derek Burch and George N. Avery collected creeping bramble fern once in 1964 in a shallow sinkhole on Ramrod Key (558, FLAS). This collection appears to be from within what is now Ramrod Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area. Bradley and Woodmansee surveyed this site in 2000, but no plants were found.

Comments: There is some confusion as to the exact habitat of creeping bramble fern on Ramrod Key. The herbarium specimen says “Frequent at edge of shallow sinkhole, hammock…” but Avery’s notes state that the plants were found in a “pineland area.”


Recommendations: · Consider reintroduction to Ramrod Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area.