Interrupted Fern

interrupted fern (2)

Interrupted Fern (Osmunda claytoniana)

Identification:

During early spring growth, it is difficult to distinguish the interrupted fern from the cinnamon fern unless there are fronds left over from the previous year. Both have woody bases and large, pale green fronds. It is one of the earliest ferns to emerge in the spring, arising from a white, cottony ball that was formed the previous fall. As the plant grows, the fertile leaflets appear in the middle of the frond (giving the plant its “interrupted” name). Once the spores mature, the fertile parts wither and fall off, leaving an empty area in the middle of each frond.

 

Propagation:

Like all the ferns, interrupted ferns can be grown from spores, but it is much easier to transplant them, using the same cautions as described for previous ferns. Neither the interrupted nor the cinnamon spread as rapidly as the ostrich fern, but as a plant matures and dies out, a circle of young ones have usually grown up around it. Some of these offspring can be carefully removed.

Habitat:

This fern can often be seen growing with the cinnamon fern. It tolerates much the same conditions, preferring shaded woodlands with moist, rich soil. The interrupted fern does not establish itself quickly, so if habitat is destroyed, it will be slow to return. That’s why some judicious transplanting can be useful to help it return to an area.

Upcoming Events

Jul
3
Mon
9:00 am Becoming a Naturalist Week 1
Becoming a Naturalist Week 1
Jul 3 @ 9:00 am – Jul 7 @ 3:00 pm
This camp builds on the camper’s ability to encounter and describe the natural world. They will use journals, collecting equipment, and take part in many fun activities that will expand their understanding of how to
Jul
10
Mon
9:00 am Young Ecologists Week 1
Young Ecologists Week 1
Jul 10 @ 9:00 am – Jul 14 @ 3:00 pm
This camp will begin to introduce the campers to the amazing complexity of our native Acadian forests. They will dissect owl pellets, take part in forest restoration planning and plantings and develop their understanding of
Jul
15
Sat
2:00 pm Forest Restoration Workshop
Forest Restoration Workshop
Jul 15 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Forest Restoration Workshop @ Macphail Woods Nature Centre | Vernon Bridge | Prince Edward Island | Canada
The Forest Restoration workshop offers alternatives to clear-cuts and plantations, and other ideas on how to improve the health of Island forests. It starts with a presentation in the Nature Centre and then participants will