About forty species of curiously un-fern-like ferns of cosmopolitan distribution. Each plant consists of a usually short, erect rhizome with one to three erect stems, each bearing a single, simple leaf blade. Mature plants also produce spikes of sporangia, singly from the base of the leaf blades.
Essentially plants of interest rather than beauty and not always easy to please. They require moist but well drained sandy loam and in containers the additions of partially decayed sphagnum moss is recommended. Partial shade is probably best, but full light is tolerated. Propagation by division in spring. Spores can also be sown in situ but will only germinate if the correct mycorrhizal fungus is present, and for the first few years development is entirely subterranean.