Amer. Fern J. 26: 44. 1936.
Stems short-creeping, 4–6 mm diam. Leaves often somewhat dimorphic, evergreen, often closely placed, 50–150 cm, fertile leaves with longer petioles and more contracted pinnae. Petiole often purplish brown, 15–50 cm × 3–6 mm, at base with brown, linear-lanceolate, hairy scales. Blade (25–)40–100 cm, 1–4(–6) proximal pairs of pinnae reduced, blade gradually tapered to pinnatifid apex. Pinnae 7–17 × 1–3 cm, incised 1/2–3/4 of width; segments rounded at apex, basal acroscopic segment of proximal pinnae often auriculate; proximal pair of veins from adjacent segments united at obtuse angle below sinus with excurrent vein 2–4 mm. Indument abaxially of uniformly short hairs 0.1–0.2 mm on costae, veins, and blade tissue; veins adaxially with stouter hairs, also with hairs 0.1–0.2 mm on blade tissue. Sori round, medial to supramedial; indusia tan, pubescent, hairs 0.1–0.3 mm; sporangial stalks with orangish, stalked glands. 2n = 144.
Habitat: Damp woods
Elevation: 0–100 m
Introduced; Ala., Fla., Ga., Ky., La., s Mexico, West Indies in the Antilles, South America to n Argentina, native to tropical and subtropical Asia, Africa.
Thelypteris dentata probably does not persist northward in areas (such as Kentucky) where winters are sometimes severe (R. Cranfill 1980).