Hard Shield Fern (Polystichum aculeatum) Brighstone Forest© MB
2006: Hard Shield Fern (Polystichum aculeatum) has been discovered growing in an apparently natural situation in Brighstone Forest, by Paul Stanley.
The only confirmed record for this species as a native until now has been that of Fred Stratton and F.J.Hanbury from a hedgebank opposite the Sun Inn at Calbourne on the 15th of August 1871. In Hampshire it is described in Brewis et al., (1996) ‘The Flora of Hampshire’ as “Very locally frequent” and is found on “Banks in dry woodland and shady stream-gullies, mainly on basic soil”. There are old unconfirmed records from the Island and these are discussed here.