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Facts about Ferns

The sawfly and several species of caterpillar eat the bracken fern. The Peruvian fern insect exclusively eats ferns. Other insects that eat ferns include aphids, whiteflys, cutworms, beetles, crickets and grasshoppers.Dec 21, 2010

Ferns are unique in land plants in having two separate living structures, so the ferny plant that we see out in the bush produces spores, and those spores, when they are released, don't grow straight back into a new ferny plant. They grow into a little tiny plant that we call a gametophyte.Aug 19, 2016

Sperm have flagella, which are whip-like tails that allow them to swim. In order to swim, they need water. This means ferns can only successfully reproduce in wet places, or after a rain. After fertilization, the sporophyte grows up on top of the gametophyte.

The fiddleheads of certain ferns are eaten as a cooked leaf vegetable. The most popular of these are: Western sword fern, Polystichum munitum, "king of northwest ferns." Bracken, Pteridium aquilinum, found worldwide (Toxic if not cooked fully)

Epiphytic ferns are one of the most common features in rainforests. They grow on the trunks and limbs of trees but unlike parasitic plants such as mistletoe, do not steal nutrients from their host tree. They survive instead on rainwater and the nutrients they get from trapped fallen leaves.

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