Pioneer Valley Fern Society

Club Moss Walk this Sunday

Ripley Rd, Montague MA

Join us for a short focused walk to identify and enjoy 6 different club mosses within easy reach of each other. There is still a lot of green ground cover in the woods and powerline area. Sunday October 16 from 1-2PM

I didn't get to making the handout of how to tell the 6 apart, but we will do that on site where it will be easier to point out the differences. They are all beautiful in their own ways. The photo shows "Blue Ground Cedar" (Diphasiastrum tristachyum) and "Hickey's Tree Clubmoss" (Dendrolycopdium hickeyi). The Hickey's is the yellow green with hefty yellow strobili. The Blue Ground Cedar is the blue-green club moss, which has not developed their third tier of growth, where their strobili will be. Both like dry sandy open areas like power lines.

We were pleasantly surprised to find a Bracken fern still green with fertile fronds, so we can show you that unusual find. There is also a really cool and unusual stone wall in the woods to see if there is time.

Here are the directions:

Ripley Rd is off of Rt 63 in Montague Center, MA. If you drive north on Rt 63 from the Amherst area you will come to a 4-way intersection in Montague, with Rt 47 to the left and North Leverett Rd to Lake Wyola to the right. Continue straight ahead (north) 0.7 miles to Ripley Rd on the right. Turn right and drive up the road, over a railroad track and around until you come to a large clearing of powerlines. It will be about a half mile from turning onto Ripley Rd to the powerlines. Drive up along the road a short way to the area near the second yellow gate on the right and park along the side of the road where you can. We will plan to be there a little early so you will see us.