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Magical World of Ferns

Ferns of which there are now about 12,000 species have been on our planet for more than 300 million years. In the Carboniferous Period they grew abundantly; the period was known as the Age of Ferns. Most ferns of this period became extinct but later some evolved into our modern ferns. Ferns are plants that do not produce seed but propagate through dust like spores.Spornagia; small capsules found on the underside of fronds (leaves) produce spores. Spores contain oil droplets and sometimes chlorophyll in addition to their nucleus.

Ferns drop millions often billions of spores during their lifetime but very few ever land in a spot suitable for growth. The spores that is fortunate to find the right conditions then starts to grow by cell division. It forms green, heart-shaped plants that measure about half an inch and lie flat on the soil. They then grow male and female organs on their undersides. The male organs produce spermatazoids which will swim via a droplet of water to the egg produced by the female organ. The fertilized egg then grows into a fern.