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tree fern

noun
1.
any of various ferns, mostly tropical and chiefly of the family Cyatheaceae, that attain the size of trees, sending up a straight trunklike stem with foliage at the summit.
Origin
1840-1850
1840-50
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for tree-fern

tree fern

noun
1.
any of numerous large tropical ferns, mainly of the family Cyatheaceae, having a trunklike stem bearing fronds at the top
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Encyclopedia Article for tree-fern

tree fern

any of a group of relatively primitive ferns in the order Cyatheales, most of them characterized by ascending trunklike stems and an arborescent (treelike) habit. Tree ferns are conspicuous plants of humid tropical forests around the world. Species found at lower elevations are often widespread colonizers of disturbed or successional habitats. A large number of species are restricted to very small ranges on islands or at higher elevations, often in more-mature forests on isolated tropical mountaintops.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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