Family • Lygodiaceae - Lygodium scandens Linn. - SMALL-LEAF CLIMBING FERN

Scientific names

Ugena microphylla Cav..
Lygodium scandens Linn.
Lygodium microphyllum (Cav.) R. Br.
Xiao ye hai jin sha (Chin.)

Other vernacular names

INDONESIA: Paku tali, paku kawat, paku hata leutik.
MALAYSIA: Ribu-ribu, selada, kapai alus.
THAILAND: Kachot nuu, ree-bun paa dee, liphao yung.

Common names

Agsam (Bik.)
Nito-nitoan (Tag.)
Nitong-parang (Tag.)
Nito (Ibn., Tag.)
Climbing maidenhair (Engl.)
Old-world climbing fern (Engl.)
Small-leaf climbing fern (Engl.)
Scansorial climbing fern (Engl.)

Nito-nitoan is a fern with dark brown slender rhizomes and climbing, twining fronds, Primary petioles are very short, the secondary ones 1 to 2 centimeters long. Sterile pinnae are 7 to 20 centimeters long, with a terminal, simple or bifid pinnule and 4 to 6 lateral ones on each side. Pinnules are alternate and stalked, 2 to 3.5 centimeters long, oblong or subtriangular, simple, entire or sometimes slightly lobed, with the base variable, rounded, truncate, cordate, or bluntly hastate. Fertile pinnules are commonly shorter. Spikes are 2.5 to 7.5 millimeters long in close rows. Spores are reticulate.

– Limited in distribution in the Philippines, seen in the Batanes Islands and some parts of Luzon.
– Also occurs in Tropical Africa, Asia, Australia and Polynesia.

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) Lygodium scandens / Chinese name / Catalogue of Life, China

(2) Lygodium microphyllum (Csv.) R. Br. / Vernacular names / GLOBinMED


Parts utilized
Entire plant.

– Decoction of the plant, especially of stems and fronds, used for dysentery and hemoptysis.
– Leaves also used for skin ailments.
– Poultices and lotions used for skin ailments, measles, and swelling.
– Lotions also used to cool in fevers.
– In Thailand decoction of roots used for fevers. Decoction of whole plant used for orchitis, cancer, joint and muscle pains.