Friday, 9 May 2008


Ferns are amongst the oldest of the plants. They occur naturally in Nottinghamshire as they have done for millions of years. They like shaded positions and don't object to our sandy soils at all.

Readers of this blog will know that I am passionate about using native species in the garden and there are many native ferns that are ideal for garden planting.

They can be marvelous architectural plants, bringing form and structure. They are evergreen and tough as old boots . They look good frosted and stand tall during summer droughts.

They also bring these wonderful, primeval shapes to the garden - and language as strange as themselves too.

This curling of the fronds is termed circinate vernation. The kind of phrase Roald Dahl could have coined.

While boys from the secondary modern school were taking their terrier ratting and learning to recognise the calls of our migrant warblers, grammar school girls were preparing their minds for this kind of information. Thank you Jill.

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