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Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’

 

Sprenger’s Asparagus, Asparagus Fern, Emerald Fern, Basket Asparagus

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassLiliopsidaMonocots (plants with a single seed leaf); includes the lily family
SubclassLiliidaeIncludes lilies, orchids, and many others
OrderAsparagalesA diverse group that includes asparagus
FamilyAsparagaceaeAgaves, asparagus, hyacinths, and others
GenusAsparagusAncient Greek name for (duh) asparagus
Speciesdensiflorus“Densely flowered”
Cultivar‘Sprengeri’

About plant names...

Asparagus ferns are so named because the soft, delicate-looking tufts of needlelike leaves look a bit like asparagus. They aren’t really ferns—ferns don’t have flowers and berries and these do. The leaves are actually short branches (cladodes). The real leaves are inconsequential and look like scales. The plant is native to South Africa.

Identification: These plants are not natives, but they can spread rapidly under the right conditions. The soft-looking, drooping fronds are quite distinctive, and conceal small thorns. Flowers are barely noticeable. Berries are small and bright red. They are popular as house plants.

Edibility: Poisonous. Skull & Crossbones These ferns are not severely poisonous,[1] but the berries can cause gastric discomfort and the sap can cause dermatitis.

Online References:

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ on Forest and Kim Starr’s Starr Environmental site

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ as Compiled by the Master Gardeners of the University of Arizona Pima County Cooperative Extension

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ on the South African National Biodiversity Institute's web site, plantzafrica.com

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ on Erv Evans' site at the North Carolina State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

1Symptoms are short-lived

Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 16 Aug 2013.

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Asparagus densiflorus (Sprenger’s Asparagus, Asparagus Fern, Emerald Fern, Basket Asparagus)

8/19/2004 · Kula Botanical Garden, Maui, HI

Asparagus densiflorus (Sprenger’s Asparagus, Asparagus Fern, Emerald Fern, Basket Asparagus)

9/7/2010 · Tower Hill Botanic Garden, Boylston, MA
≈ 17 × 12" (44 × 29 cm)

Asparagus densiflorus (Sprenger’s Asparagus, Asparagus Fern, Emerald Fern, Basket Asparagus)

2/26/2010 · San Diego Zoo, San Diego, CA

Range: Zones 9-11:

About this map...