Strap Fern – (Campyloneuum phyllitidus)
This picture shows a Strap fern in the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve in Ft. Myers. Some of the most common plants I have seen in the wetlands of SW Florida are Ferns. I have documented other fern plants on this website/blog including the Resurrection fern and Swamp Fern. Ferns are seen all over Florida in wetlands and in peoples yards and neighborhoods. They are commonly used as ornamental plants. Ferns are vascular plants meaning they have the plant tissue or xylem used to transport water and nutrients throughout the plant. They do not produce seeds and do not flower but instead reproduce by producing and releasing spores that are located underneath their leaves. They also spread by extending their roots or rhizomes in the ground. The Strap fern is an epiphyte like the Resurrection fern and grows on other plants or trees. Ferns have been around for a long time, over 300 million years. The dead matter that decomposes from ferns often becomes coal over long periods of time. Plant nurseries carry the popular varieties of ferns people like to use in their yards such as the Boston Fern, Mocha fern, Foxtail fern, Holly fern and Asparagus fern. Some of these ornamental ferns can be seen at the South Florida Plant Guide.com website. Another good website to learn about Florida’s aquatic and native plants and trees is the Univ. of Florida Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants.
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