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Re: Re: red leaf mystery continues

  • Subject: Re: [ferns] Re: red leaf mystery continues
  • From: "carol noel" carolnoel2000@hotmail.com
  • Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 20:10:54 +0000

I understand your question and will try to get some feedback from a young
botanist I know here at the U. of HI.  By the way, I live just outside of
Hilo - but seldom travel the Saddle Road over to Kona.  Just where on the
road did you notice this and I will take that route next time.

You may have a problem bringing in anything back to S.
California...mainly because Hawaiian Agriculture requires everything
leaving the state to be inspected and the stamp is necessary to pass thru
the ag. inspection at the airport.  Spore you could creatively pack but a
whole plant might be dicey.  I would be glad to check on that for you
too.  Let me know.

Carol Noel

>From: "Dean Ouer" >Reply-To: ferns@hort.net >To: >Subject: [ferns] Re:
red leaf mystery continues >Date: Mon, 18 Nov 2002 10:44:09 -0800 >
>Thanks everyone for the feedback about emerging red frond ferns.
However, I >am no closer to an explanation to my original inquiry that
seems more than >just conjecture. In order to clarify my initial
curiosity and question, let >me throw this back out for discussion in
light of the recent feedback. >I agree that the red coloration in ferns
seems more pronounced during cooler >weather. This generally also seems
to hold true with palms that have red >emerging fronds, though not
always. On this gentle slope over several >thousand acres in Hawaii that
is covered with Sadleria cyatheoides, it >changes from a green leaf to a
red leaf in the matter of several feet, >continually across the slope.
You could almost string a line and everything >on the lower side is green
emerging and everything on the upper side is red >emerging with the
plants appearing identical in other respects. >Of course, my initial
speculation was a climatic influence of weather, soil, >or light.
However, I am aware of a S. cyatheiodes that supposedly has a red >frond
in all different conditions. Several books mention it. Therefore, I
>thought this red leafed variety in question was a different species or
>variant. >However, this seemed strange because of the abruptness of the
change in >these plants. It is almost as if over hundreds of square miles
on this slope >every single fern on one side of a road would be green
without exception and >the other side would be all red without one
exception. This in an area >literally covered with Sadleria cyatheiodes.
I might add, I am fairly >certain these are all S. cyatheiodes and not
another Sadleria species. >Even if they are different species or
variants, I found it hard to believe >what I was seeing with essentially
no noticeable overlap in area between the >two populations. >Of course
the easy test would be to take a red leaf plant from the higher >area and
transplant it in a lower area and see what happens. However, I hear >they
are touchy to replant and would be especially so in lava. Even so, I
>will attempt to do so on my next trip in Dec. I would like to bring
spore >back of the red leaf fern to So. California, but I hear it is not
easy to >grow and it would be a long time before I knew if I had a
different fern >than the green leafed variety I and others are presently
growing here. If >someone knew for sure, I could save myself a lot of
time and trouble. >I might add the following. Since I am new to ferns I
have not heard "fern >people" suggest a reason for the red emerging
frond. In the palm society we >have surmised that it is a defense
mechanism for the new tender growth to >appear brown or dead to marauding
insects. Supposedly to their "eyesight" >red appears brown and therefore
dead, and flying insects will bypass this >succulent tender growth.
>Thanks again for all those who contribute to this discussion, >Dean Ouer
> > > --- Original Message ----- >From: "Duane & Dixie Petersen" >To:
"fernnet" >Sent: Monday, November 18, 2002 9:11 AM >Subject: [ferns]
where the red ferns grow > > > > While my experiences with red new growth
on ferns is limited to a few > > species, there seem to be a few factors
that seem to remain constant. > > In some adiantums no only is light a
significant influence, but so is > > temperature. While many adiantums
show red colors as new growth, they > > show a significant difference in
intensity of color when the > > temperatures cool. This is particularly
true of the A. R. > > mathewsii-microphyllum complex. During the high
light of summer only a > > few show significant coloration on the new
fronds, but let the > > temperatures drop below 60 degrees for a night or
so and suddenly the > > new growth becomes intensely red. This is despite
the lowering light > > levels in winter. Adiantum macrophyllum also shows
a more intense red > > during the cooler temperatures. Many tenerum
varieties also show color > > and as an experiment I raised half of a
batch of mixed sporlings in high > > light (artificial) and the other
half in natural, but lower light. The > > plants in 24 hours of
artificial light were much more intensely colored, > > this despite
somewhat higher temperatures. Of course to complete this > > experiment I
would have to raise half of these plants in 24 hours of > > artificial
lighting in a cool environment and the other half in natural > > light
with warmer conditions. > > Autumn ferns (dryopteris erythrosora) also
show the influences of > > light and temperature on their color. Spring
and fall seem give a > > wonderful display of reds, oranges or maroons.
Summer growth, on the > > other hand is slightly reddened or even a light
green. However, we > > occasionally have a cool spell in Kansas during
the middle of the > > summer, and when we do the red fronds almost always
show up again, > > although with less intense colors than spring or fall.
This does not > > negate the influence of light, however, since autumn
ferns are shade > > plants and they may actually receive more sun in the
spring and fall > > when the leaves of the shade trees may not have
emerged and in autumn > > may have already fallen. > > > > In summary, my
experiences with red coloration in new fronds seems to > > show that this
coloring may vary by species, variety, and individual > > plant. However,
for most plants red coloration seems to depend both on > > light and
temperatures (with temperature being the most important) as > > major
factors. There is also a genetic component to coloration. Some > > few
adiantum's in each sporing will stubbornly remain green regardless > > of
temperature, light, or my wishes. Duane Petersen > > > >
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