Monday, January 30, 2012

Green in Winter: Marginal Fern

Dryopteris marginalis is a frequent native in the eastern half of North America. Especially common and abundant in the Appalachians, it is one of the most characteristic plants of steep, cool slopes and shaded rock cliffs.

Photographed in LaPorte County, Indiana on January 29, 2012.

It is very well expressed at Turkey Run and Shades State Parks in west-central Indiana, as well as several nature preserves in the vicinity. It is virtually absent from the northern third of the state, with one known exception being a robust population in LaPorte County, on a steep sandy slope above Trail Creek. It occurs at a few sites just to the north in Berrien County, Michigan.

The sori (clusters of tiny sporangia, where spores are produced) occur along the margins of the pinnules (smallest blade divisions), hence the specific epithet marginalis.

Ferns are lovely. Ferns are beautiful. Emma Bickham Pitcher

Nature made ferns for pure leaves, to show what she could do in that line. Henry David Thoreau

1 comment:

Steve said...

Too bad I won't be seeing any of these wonderful plants down here in Florida. Thanks for sharing the beautiful images though.

The Walnut tree is facing the same kinds of threats from the Black Walnut Tree beetle. I actually posted a blog about this over at a while back. This needs to be monitored so thanks for writing about this.

My team and I are actually working on a Botany/Horticulture/Environmental Technology project over at to help people around the world – those “less versed” in botany, gardening and horticulture – learn more, in an interactive way, about the wonderful plant and tree life that surrounds us daily. Most know so very little about these things and our goal is to educate so that through awareness, and maybe a little increased knowledge, we can help to save plant and tree species that so desperately need our attention.

Thanks for you posts and I look forward to see more of them as you write them.