General Landscape Uses:
Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations. Also rock gardens.
Ecological Restoration Notes:
It can be used as one of many understory herbs in pine rocklands.
Grown by enthusiasts.
Medium herbaceous fern.
About 1-2 feet in height. Usually taller than broad.
Monroe County Keys north to St. Lucie and Collier counties; Bahamas. In the Monroe County Keys, apparently disjunct from Miami-Dade County to the pine rocklands of Big Pine Key and nearby islands. Very rare north of the Miami River; perhaps extirpated in Broward and Palm Beach counties, and either never present or extirpated in Martin County.
Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.
Map of suggested ZIP codes from South Florida north to southern Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Pasco counties.
Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations from the Monroe County Keys north to Martin and Charlotte counties.
Moist, well-drained limestone soils, without humus.
Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Full sun to light shade.
There are no flowers; the plants reproduce by spores.
Can be grown from spores.
A Gardener's Guide to Florida's Native Plants
Bahama ladder brake hybridizes with the exotic China brake (P. vittata) forming Delchamps' ladder brake (P. x delchampsii) and is threatened with extinction through hybridization. It is listed as threatened by the state of Florida.