This Cyathea dregei frond was seen in the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden. Thrice compound (or tripinnate), the leaflets on the third level of (smallest) stalks have entire margins. This differentiates the plant from C. capensis, the other South African species having serrated margins on its leaflets.
Two rows of round, brown sori (groups of spore cases) grow near the base on the lower surfaces of some leaflets. The lower part of the frond rachis is brown from woolly hairs in picture. New fronds grow in spring.
Two Zimbabwean species Cyathea manniana (prickles on the stem, frond stalks and rachises) and C thomsonii (pale, twisted hairs along the leaflet under-surfaces) complete the list of southern African tree fern species (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Pooley, 1993).
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