Asia-Tropical: Lesser Sunda Is. (Bali present); Philippines (Philippines present), Australasia: Queensland (Queensland present), Cook Islands present, Easter Island present, Lesser Sunda Is present, N.E. New Guinea present, New Caledonia present, New Hebrides present, Pitcairn present, S. Luzon present, Solomon Islands present, Sumbawa present, Tahiti present
Queensland, Solomon Islands, New Hebrides, New Caledonia, eastwards to Tahiti; var. hispida Holttum in Cook Islands, Pitcairn, Easter Island (see Holttum in Allertonia 1977), in Malesia: N.E. New Guinea, Philippines (S. Luzon), and Lesser Sunda Is. (Bali, Sumbawa).
This species has been much misinter- preted; the first author after Brackenridge to characterize it clearly was Maxon (1924) but he did not see the characteristic minute glands. The fern so named by Hooker () is Chingia longissima (Brack.) Holttum. Diels and Christensen confused P. costata with P. pennigera (Forst. f.) Holttum of New Zealand and S.E. Australia; some specimens from Samoa were named Dryopteris transversaria and D. christopherseni by Christensen.