Herb: Mountain Bladder Fern


Latin name: Cystopteris montana


Synonyms: Felix montana, Polypodium montanum


Family: Dryopteridaceae (Wood Fern Family)



Edible parts of Mountain Bladder Fern:

Root. An emergency food, it is only used when all else fails.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Fern

Height:
25 cm
(9 3/4 inch)

Habitat of the herb:

Damp, usually basic, rocks on mountains, 700 - 1100 metres in Northern England and Scotland.

Propagation of Mountain Bladder Fern:

Spores - best sown as soon as ripe on the surface of a humus-rich sterilized soil. Keep the compost moist, preferably by putting a plastic bag over the pot. Germinates in 1 - 3 months at 20C.Pot on small clumps of plantlets as soon as they are large enough to handle and keep humid until they are well established. Do not plant outside until the ferns are at least 2 years old. Division in spring.

Cultivation of the herb:

Damp, usually basic, rocks on mountains, 700 - 1100 metres in Northern England and Scotland.

Medicinal use of Mountain Bladder Fern:

None known

Known hazards of Cystopteris montana:

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.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.