Monday, May 16, 2016

House Circuit (4). The Fernery.

Outside the kitchen window in a north facing corner I have a collection of mostly native ferns grown both in pots and in the soil.  Ferns can be quite difficult to identify, so having a collection which I see every day makes the different species more easy to pick out when looking in woods and hedgerows. Many are also distinctive when the fronds unfurl in spring, but grow to look much more like one another as the season goes on.

Above is an unfurling frond of hard shield-fern, one of the scarcest species in our area.  The backward curve of the frond tip is easy to pick out at this time of year and is very similar to the frond of soft shield-fern, though this plant tends to a rather lighter green and with a less spread out shuttlecock shape.

Another interesting pteridophytic feature is at about 4pm on the circuit where a plant of alexanders has seemingly grown from the shuttlecock of broad buckler-fern.  

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