Pioneer Valley Fern Society

Our Next Fern Walk is Saturday June 22

Norcross Wildlife Sanctuary, Monson MA 1-3pm

It is hard to believe it is almost July already! And it seems like a long time since our last Fern Walk this year. Our next one is planned for some place different, the Norcross Wildlife Sanctuary in Monson MA. We did a walk through a week or so ago and found a number of ferns we think you will enjoy. Things have changed a bit (no more signs labeling the ferns), but we can still find a good selection. The Sanctuary is not open Sundays, so this Fern Walk is scheduled for Saturday.

This photo is of a Northern Oak Fern (Gymnocarpium dryopteris), which is uncommon in our area, We know a few small spots, but there are lots of them at Norcross, especially in the Atlantic White Cedar Swamp area. They must have planted them there a long time ago, and they have thrived. It may be hard to tell from my photo, but they are small in size and delicate, with wiry stems and the frond is often horizontal to the ground (great for overhead photos). They grow in moist woods and we have also found them growing on rock. They look a bit like Bracken ferns, but there is a significant difference in size and where they grow, as well as the delicateness of the Northern Oak Fern.

The weather forecast looks bad for Monson (and most of our area) tomorrow, so there is a good chance we will be postponing the walk to the following Saturday June 29th. We will post and send out an email by 10 AM tomorrow to let you know about the schedule.