Single fronds growing from far-reaching rhizomatous rootstock. Fronds 3-pinnate with tough stems nearly half the length. Densely hairy young fronds, when mature only hairy beneath. To 2m+
Sori (spore-cases) form thin line round margin of each segment, covered by inrolled leaf edge when young.
Abundant and sometimes very invasive on acidic moorland, pastures, open woods. Difficult to eradicate and can be poisonous to livestock if eaten in quantity.
Above: Bracken - young frond. April 2008