Phymatosorus scolopendria
Microsorum scolopendria
Polypodium scolopendria

Phymatosorus scolopendria or Microsorum scolopendria or Polypodium scolopendria phymatosorus10.jpg (28294 bytes) phymatosorus60.jpg (33002 bytes) phymatosorus200.jpg (32200 bytes)

English name: Maile-scented fern
Family name: Polypody ferns (Polypodiaceae)
Chuukese: Amäära. February 2004: Two Chuukese students report this to be wrong.
Laua'e, which means "beloved" or "sweet" according to its fragrance.
Kosraean: Sra kwem kwem
Mortlockese: Chichi
Mwoakillese: Kamkam
Pingalapese: Kesap
Pohnpeian: Kidou. Some students from Kepar, Kitti, report: Uluhl en kieil or ulung en kieil (pillow of the large lizard). Other dispute this appellation.
Yapese name: Gob

Location collected: found near the Agriculture building at COM-FSM, Palikir.

Habitat: Grows on rocks, trees, or the forest floor. It can also grow beside saltwater beaches and shady moist forest.

Frond description: The leaves are loped shaped, dimpled on the underside by spore clusters. The fronds are fewer (2 or 3) according to its nutrients, but can have more fronds if the nutrients around it is good. It is describe as a creeping rhizome. When the plant is young, the fronds are undivided and then in a mature plant the fronds develope into lobes, that can 2 to 3 feet long.

Specimen collected and web page created by: Duane Yamaguchi, October 1998.

Kosraen medicinal use: Chewing a very young leaf stops diarhea. - DLL


Anako Albert: Young, light green leaf chewed to stop diarhea.


When used by young dancers as a mwarmwar, the erect crown of fronds acts as a "fence" against ghosts being brought on the dancers. Protects dancers from anyone trying to cast magic onto them.

Compare to the ground running variant kidou. While some locals distinguish linguistically between ground running and epiphytic P. scolopendria, these appear to be the same plants.

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