Pellaea andromedifolia

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Pellaea andromedifolia
Pellaea andromedifolia 2.jpg
Scientific classification
P. andromedifolia
Binomial name
Pellaea andromedifolia

Pellaea andromedifolia, with the common names coffee cliffbrake and coffee fern, is a species of cliff brake fern in the Cheilanthoideae subfamily of the Pteridaceae.[1] It is native to California in the United States and Baja California in Mexico.


This plant does not have the immediately recognizable sharply pointed leaflets on its fronds that many other ferns have. Its leaves bear rounded or oval-shaped segments widely spaced along the rachis. Each segment may curl under along its edges. The leaves are green when new, then turn red, purplish, or brown.

Some individuals of this species are diploid and reproduce sexually, while some are triploid or tetraploid and reproduce by apogamy (growth of a plant from a gamete without fertilization).


Pellaea andromedifolia is found on dry Western facing sunny banks, in coastal, Mojave Desert, and California chaparral and woodlands habitats. It is able to take long periods without water, when it will shrivel and appear dead. Then shortly after rainfall new growth appears quickly from the ground. It is not crown forming, but spreading slowly and forming clumps.


  1. ^ Christenhusz et al., 2011 Maarten J. M. Christenhusz, Xian-Chun Zhang & Herald Schneider: "A linear sequence of extant families and genera of lycophytes and ferns," Phytotaxa, 19: 7-54 (18 Feb. 2011)

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