This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol1", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Fleshy terrestrial plants, with stout erect rootstocks, bearing clustered, fleshy, often corrugated roots and 1 or sometimes 2 or 3 erect leaves, these consisting of a short cylindric wholly or partially hypogean common stalk, bearing at its summit a simple 1-3-pinnately compound or decompound free-veined sterile blade and a single long-stalked fertile spike or 1-4-pinnate panicle, the sporophyl, with numerous globular distinct sporanges in two rows, sessile or nearly so; spores copious, sulphur yellow. Bud for the following season at the apex of the rootstock, enclosed within the base of the common stalk, either wholly concealed or visible along one side. [Name in allusion to the grape-like arrangement of the sporanges.]
About 20 species, largely natives of the temperate regions of both hemispheres. Type species: Botrycliium Lunaria (L.) Sw.
Buds of the following season wholly concealed within the base of the common stalk; sterile blade more or less fleshy; cells of the epidermis straight.
Sporophyl and sterile blade both erect in the bud.
Sporophyl or sterile blade, or both, at least slightly bent over in bud.
Buds glabrous; sterile blade pinnate (or, in no. 10. sometimes subternate); spores maturing in early summer.
Sterile blade slightly bent over in bud, clasping the nearly erect sporophyl.
Leaves usually stout, the sterile blade nearly sessile, oblong, with close (often
B. Lunar 1a.
Leaves slender, the sterile blade usually stalked, oblong to deltoid, with cuneate mostly distant segments.
Sterile blade distinctly bent over at the tip in the bud, always pinnately divided;
segments 3-4 pairs.
Sterile blade with the tip slightly inclined in bud, entire, or with 1-3 pairs of
Sterile blade and sporophyl bent over in bud.
Sterile blade distinctly stalked.
Sterile blade closely sessile.
Buds pilose; sterile blades subternately divided; spores maturing in late summer or autumn. Sterile blades membranous in drying; segments mostly acutish, serrulate to laciniate.
Segments mostly acute or acutish, serrulate-dentate.
Segments laciniate, often deeply so.
Sterile blades thick, leathery in drying; segments obtuse, crenate to sinuate.
Leaves 3'-7' long; sterile blade at most 2' broad; segments few.
Leaves 8'-i8' long; sterile blade 4'-8' broad; segments numerous.
q. B. silaifoliuin.
Bud of the following season exposed along one side; sterile blade very thin; cells of the epi-