Doodia caudata sensu Allan (1961), Doodia caudata sensu A.Rich.; Doodia media var. caudata G.M.Thomson; Blechnum molle (Parris) Christenh.
Vascular – Native
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
2n = c.192
Current conservation status
The threat classification status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2017 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: DP, Sp
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon | Qualifiers: Sp
2009 | At Risk – Naturally Uncommon
2004 | Sparse
Endemic. Kermadec Islands ( Macauley Island). New Zealand: North Island from Awanui south to the Hamilton Basin, Hauraki Plains, coastal portion of the Bay of Plenty and from the Hawkes Bay, and the southern Wairarapa.
Usually found in coastal to lowland forest, often along river margins or in alluvial forest, especially in damp sites or in deep highly fertile forest soils (especially overlying basalt, andesite or alluvium). Occasionally found under light scrub on damp clay banks. This species has also been gathered from the margins of drains running through alluvial forest. Often found in association with Doodia australis, with which it forms sterile hybrids known as D. xdigena Parris. More rarely found sympatric with D. squarrosa, with which it may also hybridise.
Small, tufted fern. Rhizomes erect. Stipes 30-150 mm long, clad in pale brown scales; rachises finely hairy. Frond faintly, sweetly scented when crushed. Sterile fronds spreading to prostrate with short, broad pinnae. Fertile fronds erect with longer narrower pinnae. Frond laminae narrowly elliptic to linear, pinnate, pinnules usually basally and broadly lobed, 80-260 x 15-50 mm, firmly fleshy, hairy or glabrous, pink or pinkish-green when young, maturing pale yellow-green to green. Pinnae in 10-20 pairs, the lower and middle ones stalked, the upper adnate. Terminal pinna 7-25 mm long (usually less than one-eigth of the total frond length). Longest pinnae 8-30 x 2-3 mm. Sori usually running together at maturity. Indusia linear, occasionally hairy.
Superficially similar to Doodia squarrosa to which it seems to be closely related. For example both species have markedly dimorphic fronds, i.e., the sterile fronds have broader pinnules and are usually spreading and prostrate while the fertile fronds have narrower, linear pinnules and are held erect. However, D. squarrosa is usually much larger, it also tends to grow in drier and more exposed conditions, such as on basalt lava fields, scoria cones, and in the flood zone of creeks, streams and rivers. The terminal pinna of D. squarrosa is rather longer than in D. mollis (up to about half the total length of the frond) and rachis is distinctly scaly rather than hairy as in D. mollis. Some apparently sterile, intermediate collections made from sites around Awanui where both species are sympatric suggests that they may hybridise.
Not applicable - spore producing
Not applicable - spore producing
Easily grown from fresh spores. An attractive fern that does well in dappled light on free draining, fertile but damp soil. Makes an excellent pot plant. Despite its apparently delicate nature it can be very drought tolerant.
An apparently naturally uncommon, biologically sparse species. Although some populations have been lost through land development the species remains rather widespread, and can at times be locally common.
doodia: Named for Samuel Doody, 17th century London apothecary and curator
Perrie et al. (2014) advocated for a broadened circumscription of Blechnaceae whereby a number of genera traditionally recognized as distinct from Blechnum were merged within it. However, this view has not met with universal acceptance (see Gasper et al. 2016) and does not seem to be followed worldwide (PPG 2016). From a New Zealand perspective the decision to merge Doodia in Blechnum, and rejection of Diploblechnum has not been universally accepted either e.g., Wilcox & Warden (2017), and as such it is considered appropriate to follow world opinion and accept the taxonomy of Gasper et al. (2016) and recommendations of the PPG (2016).
Fact sheet [repared for NZPCN by P.J. de Lange (2 February 2005). Description adapted from Parris (1973) and Brownsey & Smith-Dodsworth (2000)
References and further reading
Brownsey, P.J.; Smith-Dodsworth, J.C. 2000: New Zealand Ferns and Allied Plants. Auckland, David Bateman
Gasper, A.L.; de Oliveira Dittrich, V.A.; Smith A.R.; Salino, A. 2016: A classification for Blechnaceae (Polypodiales: Polypodiopsida): New genera, resurrected names, and combinations. Phytotaxa 275: 191–227.
Parris, B.S. 1973: The genus Doodia (Blechnaceae: Filicales) in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Botany 10: 585-610.
Perrie, L.R.; Wilson, R.K.; Shepherd, L.D.; Ohlsen, D.J.; Batty, E.L.; Brownsey, P.J.; Bayly, M.J. 2014: Molecular phylogenetics and generic taxonomy of Blechnaceae ferns. Taxon 63: 745-758.
PPG 1: The Pteridophyte Phylogeny Group 2016: A community-derived classification for extant lycophytes and ferns. Journal of Systematics and Evolution 54: 563-603.
Wilcox, M.; Warden, J. 2017: Botany of Hillsborough coast bush reserves, Manukau Harbour, Auckland. Auckland Botanical Society Journal 72: 32-46.
NZPCN Fact Sheet citation
Please cite as: de Lange, P.J. (Year at time of access): Doodia mollis Fact Sheet (content continuously updated). New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/doodia-mollis/ (Date website was queried)