But that's another story. This blog is about ferns. About my ignorance of same. Over the years I have managed to build up a bit of knowledge about flowering plants, insects and birds. But ferns? No. Nothing. I've been on excursions in the Otways with experts and on field trips with knowledgeable amateurs. I've checked my own references and the internet after taking photos of ferns, in an attempt to identify what I've seen, and failed. Is it really so hard?
I've had a few successes. I now think I recognise the Screw Fern, the Kangaroo Fern, Coral Fern, Mother Shield-Fern, Pacific Azolla, Sickle Fern and Nardoo. But then I lose confidence when I'm faced with a choice: Is it a Mother Shield-fern or a Bristly Shield-fern? Is this a Rough Tree-fern of a Soft Tree-fern?
My knowledge of ferns was put to the test yesterday when we explored some of the delightful tall trees and ferny understories of forested areas near Beech Forest in the Otway Ranges. You go into sensory overload in these forests with the smells, the sounds and beauty in abundance.
Kangaroo Fern Microsorum pustulatum
Turtons Track, Otway Ranges