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Live Plant Specimens >> Ferns


Azolla

AzollaThe Mosquito ferns, genus Azolla, also called water ferns and duckweed ferns because they are often found growing alongside with duckweed species, are a peculiar genus (the only genus in the family Azollaceae) of six species of aquatic ferns. They are extremely reduced in form and specialized, looking nothing like conventional ferns but greatly resembling moss.

Mosquito ferns float on the surface of water with their roots floating in the water. They form a symbiotic relationship with the cyanobacterium Anabaena azollae, which allows the plants to fix nitrogen from the air.

Because of their nitrogen-fixing capability, mosquito ferns have enabled an agricultural revolution in parts of southeast Asia. When rice paddies are flooded in the spring, they can be inoculated with Azolla, which then quickly multiplies to cover the water. As the plants die, they contribute nitrogen to the rice plants, and as the rice paddy dries out, the Azolla all eventually die, making an exceptional green fertilizer.

Description Price SelectQuantity
Azolla - Class 12 $ 4.00
Azolla - Class 30 $ 6.00
Azolla - Class 60 $ 12.00
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Fern Fronds

Fern FrondsA frond is the leaf structure of a fern or alga. The term is colloquially applied to the leaves of palms, cycads, and plants with pinnately compound leaves. A significant difference is that, unlike the leaves of the latter, fern fronds bear the reproductive structures (spore-bearing structures) of the sporophyte plant. Because many ferns grow fronds that are held more vertical than horizontal, the "upper" and "lower" surfaces of a frond are more correctly referred to as the adaxial and abaxial surfaces, respectively.

A fern frond consists of a stipe, the stem supporting the blade, and the blade consists of both a laminar (flattened) photosynthetic tissue and a rachis—that portion of the stem to which the laminar tissue is attached. The blades of fern fronds may vary from being simple (undivided) to being highly dissected, even "lace-like". If the leaf tissue is undissected, or the dissections do not reach to the rachis, the frond may be described as lobed or pinnatifid. Otherwise, the blade is compound and each large division of the laminar tissue arising from the rachis is called a pinna (pl., pinnae). The main vein or mid-rib of a pinna is known as a costa (pl., costae). Pinnae may be arranged along the rachis either directly opposite one another or alternating up the stem. The arrangement may change from the base of a blade to the tip, as in the example of Blechnum shown below (from base to tip: pinnae opposite to alternate, and pinnatisect to pinnatifid).

Description Price SelectQuantity
Fern Fronds w/ Sori - Each $ 4.00
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Ferns Sp. Complete Plant

Ferns Sp. Complete PlantA fern, or pteridophyte, is any one of a group of about 20,000 species of plants classified in the Division Pteridophyta, formerly known as Filicophyta. The group is also referred to as polypodiophyta, or polypodiopsida when treated as a subdivision of tracheophyta (vascular plants). The study of ferns is called pteridology.

A fern is a vascular plant that differs from the more primitive lycophytes in having true leaves (megaphylls), and from the more advanced seed plants (gymnosperms and angiosperms) in lacking seeds. Like all vascular plants, it has a life cycle, often referred to as alternation of generations, characterised by a diploid sporophytic and a haploid gametophytic phase. Unlike the gymnosperms and angiosperms, in ferns the gametophyte is a free-living organism

Description Price SelectQuantity
Ferns Sp. Complete Plant - Each $ 8.00
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Niles Biological, Inc.
9298 Elder Creek Road
Sacramento, CA 95829
(916) 386-2665