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2 September 2021 First Record of Sporangiasters in the Blechnaceae
Sonia Molino, Michael Sundue, Weston Testo
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Sporangiasters are an uncommon type of paraphyses, occurring in a handful of leptosporangiate fern genera. We report sporangiasters in Parablechnum nesophilum, which is their first recorded occurrence in the Blechnaceae. We provide evidence of their homology to sporangia and discuss their functional significance. The presence of sporangiasters in P. nesophilum is surprising because the species has a well-developed indusium, and paraphyses are generally most common in exindusiate ferns. We surmise that these sporangiasters act as a second stage of protection for the developing sporangia after the indusium retracts. Alternatively, it is possible that sporangiasters may influence the vagility of spores by inhibiting dehiscence and limiting the ability of the annulus to disperse its spores.

Sonia Molino, Michael Sundue, and Weston Testo "First Record of Sporangiasters in the Blechnaceae," American Fern Journal 111(3), 196-204, (2 September 2021).
Published: 2 September 2021
spore dispersal
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