Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Dryopteris filix-mas

A highlight of this trip to the Hurons was seeing Dryopteris filix-mas in this region for the first time. D. filix-mas is common in Washington and the Pacific Northwest, but is otherwise too far north to be found in the U.S., though it is found pretty much across the width of Canada. However, it does get down into the U.P. in a few places, as well as in the northern part of MI's Lower Peninsula. We found one of those places along county route 510, northwest of Marquette. There were several large patches of the ferns on rocky outcrops in a forested, well-drained and shady area south of the road (with the ferns on the north and east facing slopes). It's a large species, with very large fronds, and the characteristic kidney-bean shaped sori found in all Dryopteris (see below).

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