Who’s Afraid of a Lovely Fern? (The Ferns of Fernhill)
Ferns is an unusual word, and no wonder. Ferns are unusual! They’re related to but different from the ferns you have in your garden, which are the result of the efforts of a gardener to grow them naturally. Your ferns are the work of a human being.
But the ferns in your garden are no ordinary ferns. They’re called ‘raggedy ferns,’ and are the result of an ancient, possibly even prehistoric, fern-farming culture.
There are, literally, millions of species of ferns in the world. They are found in every continent, except Antarctica, and on every continent except Antarctica, but also on the continents of Europe and Asia, North America, Australasia, Australasia, South America, and Africa.
But even today, if you go to a park in the suburbs of New York City, in particular, you’ll find the remnants of a prehistoric fern-farming culture. These ferns are referred to as ‘raggedy ferns.’
It is not only possible to find raggedy ferns in parks but also in museums all over the world.
In North America, they live mainly in the state of Maine; in Britain they live primarily in the Lake District; and in Australia, the ferns are found all over the countryside, except in the suburbs.
The ferns that you see in parks and gardens all over the world are, as a rule, not a good example of a ‘raggedy’ fern.
They are tall and slender, with lots of straight fronds. They grow in clumps, in a mass of individual fronds—it makes them look like huge, lush, and green bushes.
But, when you look closely at a single fern of this type, you may notice that it doesn’t have a normal shape. All its fronds are almost exactly the same length and width, but they don’t hang together in a straight line