A large fern found on neutral or acidic substrates in fen-carr woodland and ditches, and on riverbanks and rocky lake shores. In W. Ireland it also grows in wet fields, mires and, more rarely, on limestone sea-cliffs. It is often confined to inaccessible sites in grazed areas. Lowland to 365 m in S. Kerry.
O. regalis was heavily collected in Victorian times for cultivation and osmunda fibre. This, and habitat loss, caused its decline, though it is now recovering in some areas and few sites have been lost since the 1962 Atlas. It is also planted and occurs as a garden escape.
Suboceanic Southern-temperate element; also in E. Asia and N. America.
PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.
Atlas text references
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1972)
1978. Ferns and their allies. The Island of Mull: a survey of its flora and environment. :12.1-12.7.
1999. Britain's rare flowers.
1965. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.
1997. The ferns of Britain and Ireland, edn 2.