May 12, 2010

A Walk in the Woods: Ferns Unfurling

I took a walk today, after several days of bad weather or busyness around the house didn't allow the time for it. The woods are now quite green, with trees and underbrush in leaf, outshining the color of moss and lichen. What most caught my eye were the varied ferns, in the process of unfurling their leaves, each with a different form. The plant above seems to hover between flora and fauna, a curled caterpillar dangling at the end of the hairy stalk.

Curved lines rise above green fronds that spent the winter under the coverlet of snow.

And here, little pinwheels spin above stalks peppered with dark hairs. Mother Nature is full of surprises, full of invention.


  1. I'm quite smitten with these forms Altoon. About 20 years ago I had a fascination with spirals that persisted for some years.
    Then visitng NZ 5 years ago really brought this imagery back to mind.

    The top image is particularly engaging!

  2. I agree that the top image is especially compelling. Don't know why ferns lend themselves to our imagination so much or why I often find myself projecting our human nature on them. But I never tire of seeing photographs of or photographing ferns.

  3. hi Julie and Sophie, I'm pleased that you like these images; I think that it might be the animal/vegetable quality of that top image that draws the attention. I remember visiting the botanic garden in Melbourne, Australia years ago and seeing huge, amazing looking ferns. I felt as though I was transported back to the age of the dinosaurs.