Sowalong: Growing Ferns from Spores
I'll be covering the so along in various ways in the coming weeks but this first episode is answering demand that many of you have heard which is for information on propagating funds and this isn't so much of so long as a spore along because as we'll be finding out from an expert. Peter Blake growing new baby. Funds isn't quite the same as sowing seeds of other plants. If you're wondering why on earth you'd ever bother with growing houseplants from C. Because hey it's easy enough to walk into your nearest Garden Centre or Plant. Btk and pick up full-size plants Let me just explain I? It's cheap and if you're the kind of person who doesn't have a lot of extra income to splash out on buying plots then you can pick up a range of house. Plants CPAC is for a few pounds or dollars or whatever your local currency may be and you can get from that packet a large number of plants which then you could sell give to friends and family or just keep to turn your home into a tangle jungle so it's a cheap way of getting lots of lovely plants it also really gives you fantastic insight into how those plots grow plus rather than buying a plant in a nursery. That's been called within an inch of its life in the APP sleet computer controlled perfect environment. You'll be bringing up a plant in your own home which will be adapted to your conditions. That said there are some drawbacks. It does take up a fair bit of room. You may need a few bits of equipment and you'll need a specially formulated potting. Mix Feed your seeds to go into. We'll be looking at there's aspects of the so long in upcoming episodes but as I say to get in touch. Tell me how your plants growing on the you've sewn in previous oh lungs and what else. You'd like to know because there's still plenty of time to contribute. I spoke to Peter Blake who has many of experience with Ferns to find out how it's done. Here's Peter to introduce himself pharmafirm enthusiast. Who's been growing fans for about fifteen years now? Both hardy ferns in the And tender tropical ferns in glasshouses. I've been in the British territory Logical Society. Which is the basically the fern society for the UK For that length of time and I've had a great deal of help and support through then And also have had a lot of sports from them because they operate a spaw exchange system at the beginning of each year. I guess this is kind of Botany Wanna one. But why are we propagating funds from spores and not from seeds? Can you just explain? Explain that to us. Because not everyone's going to know the the reproductive processes of the Fund particularly well pearn saw unusual and they'll basically quite primitive plants along with a number of other spore producing plants like mosses but they all vascular plants so they're a bit more advanced to the mosses but what they do is they produce a spool which is very small and light and can travel a long way. The Fun self that we're used to seeing in the Gulf and or an apart- he's actually a plan that has no gender. It's not the male no female and dispositive producers Equally male and female. But those little spores if they learned in the right place will cause a second plant to grow which scientifically is called a domestic fights or a pro selous and that little plant which most of people have not ever recognized because they're so small actually is a sexual plant and it has both male and female sex organs. The male sex organs are called the answer India and the female sex organs are cold. They ought to go near an effect effectively. The anterior produced little swimming things like sperm and they travel through a film of Water Which is why the profile. I need I'm to grow And they traveled through that film of water to the goon. Yeah where they will search allies an egg in in that place and Once the eggs fertilized begin to divide and we'll grow into a new phone which will look like once used to seeing so the sexual pulse of life cycle is by faith. Life Cycle is the domestic flights and the SX. You'll part the part that produces the spoils is cool. So let me. It sounds complicated. It's a system that's worked very well for Ferns for the last three hundred and fifty million years so it it certainly ineffective system indeed and it's something that is new to many of us who've perhaps grown plants from seed. The procedure is a little bit different. How do we know? First of all that a firm is ready to be harvested for spores. Firm can carry spools in a number of ways. It's always on a front. Which is what we call leaf. Basically we call them friends Unusually for particularly for the funds that we see as natives in the UK Those fronts look very much all the same whether they carry spores or not And so if you turn the front over on just playing green on the back they probably don't go to any sports if you turn the from Dover and look at the back of an east coverage and little brown spots then those what's cool soreye and those are the little collections that actually contain the spores. Some funds will get a completely separate type of front looks different from the rest of the of the plant to carry those balls in Sarai these little collections and ones that do things like Royal Sun which you sometimes see growing next to water middle. Have a big plume in the middle Covered in Soreye. And you can sit because as a golden brown coal aware of the rest of the plant is green. But generally for most funds that we come across commonly the Sore I carrying this buzzer on the back of the front. If they're very young Soraya not ripe yet they will appear white or Pale Green when they're just coming to the right sorts of ripeness to collect them they turn the sorts of time. Color generally wind up going over and released that Spos- they've gone. They don't Brown. What actually happens in that Source is the source contain lots of little containers which could spur NGO which actually contain the spores and those Speranza when they're ripe. If the winds dries little bits will burst open. And actually fire the spoils out so if you take a Franz where you're beginning to see the Tan colored Soraya on the back and you put on a piece of white paper in a warm dry place like the iron covered or in the dining room table or something like that whether or not drafts. If you need to overnight in the morning if you lift front off you will find that there was a person of Sarai on the paper where the sprint. You have phya down the schools. And they've actually hit the paper and stuck to it so you can get the very nice sorts of shadow picture of the front just may down to the poor scientists released.