Alsophila australis R.Br.
Alsophila loddigesii Kunze.
Common Name: Rough Tree Fern
Rough tree fern is an evergreen tree fern that can grow up to 12 metres tall, occasionally to 18 metres[
The plant is utilized by native people as a source of food and is often grown in gardens as an ornamental[
Although we have found no reports of toxicity for this species, a number of ferns contain carcinogens so some caution is advisable[
Many ferns also contain thiaminase, an enzyme that robs the body of its vitamin B complex. In small quantities this enzyme will do no harm to people eating an adequate diet that is rich in vitamin B, though large quantities can cause severe health problems. The enzyme is destroyed by heat or thorough drying, so cooking the plant will remove the thiaminase[
Eastern Australia - Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania.
Very abundant in forests and forest margins[
]. Often in shaded ravines near flowing water[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Able to grow in climates from warm temperate to tropical[
]. Plants experience snow in the south of their range and can survive occasional temperatures as low as -7c[
Starch is obtained from tissues in the top of the trunk[
]. This is eaten raw or roasted[
The hard part of the stem is made into walking sticks and fancy furniture[
Spores - can be surface sown at any time of the year in a light position[
]. Keep moist by standing the pot in shallow water or by enclosing it in a plastic bag. Germinates in 1 - 3 months at 25°c. Prick out patches of the young plants into small pots and stand the pots in shallow water until the plants are well established[
]. Grow on in a shady position until large enough to plant out.
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