Known as the Resurrection Fern (Cheilanthes lasiophylla), although this is a common name applied to a large range of ferns around the world. The Cheilanthes lasiophylla is native to Australia and is named because they are curled up looking dry and dead, then spring back to life when it rains.

A fern with slow-creeping rhizome. The fronds clustered are erect to about 25 cm in length. Stipe (the stalk of a fern frond), rhachis (the midrib of a frond), lamina that is densely clad in pale-brown scales and hairs (especially on the lower surface of the pinnae), with unprotected sori (cluster of spore-producing receptacles on the the underside of a fern frond).

Native to Western Australia, Northern Territory, South Australia, Queensland, New South Wales. It is rare in Victoria. Found growing in rock crevices, rocky outcrops in arid zones and on rocky slopes in mountain ranges.

Common name
Woolly Cloak-fern, Woolly Cloak Fern, Resurrection Fern.

A cosmopolitan genus of at least 180 species; 15 species in Australia, of which nine species and one subspecies are endemic. Occurs throughout Australia, extending from coastal to inland habitats of more severe aridity than tolerated by any other genus of ferns. Three taxa (C. tenuifolia, C. contigua and C. nudiuscula ) also occur in SE Asia, and two (C. distans and C. sieberi subsp. sieberi ) in New Zealand and some Pacific islands. Cheilanthes prenticei is presently recorded only in the Cape York area and on Thursday Is. in the Torres Strait.

Cheilanthes is a genus of about 180 species of ferns that are typically found growing in dry, rocky areas in open woodland and exposed areas.

  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Clade: Tracheophytes
  • Class: Pteridopsida
  • Order: Polypodiales
  • Family: Pteridaceae
  • Genus: Cheilanthes
  • Species: C. lasiophylla
  • Binomial name: Cheilanthes lasiophylla

Footnote & References

  1. Cheilanthes Sw., Flora of Australia,
  2. Passion for Plants – Rising from the Dead, ABC Local, 14 July 2010,