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Fern World BPS Newsletter - Summer 2011

Issue 2. Produced by the BPS Publicity & Marketing Team

Fern World Editor’s Letter Hello and welcome

to the second

edition of the Fern World Newsletter! For those who don’t already know, this is one of the online news sources for the BPS - British Pteridological Society - the society for fern enthusiasts. We are already well into this season of field meetings, both regional and national, and the AGM has also taken place. We have also been experiencing some unseasonally good weather so far in 2011 (not complaining although it has meant a lot of extra watering!). On pages 4 and 5 of this Newsletter is a small photo journal of the Spring Overseas Field Meeting in Madeira in March, and pages 6 and 7 give a brief account of the Polypodium weekend. On page 8 you can find the results so far of the Education Group’s Survey. Pages 9 and 10 will give you some reminders of upcoming fern events, and on page 11 you will find contact details for all the regional group leaders - plus a special offer from the RHS which is available only to BPS members! Further information about the society can be found on the BPS website at:

[Above: fern hunting in Madeira!]

I have really appreciated your comments and feedback on the Winter/Spring Newsletter, and have taken many of your points into consideration. As always, if you have any suggestions about the content for the newsletter, please feel free to contact me, Liz Evans, at the Publicity email address:

Signing Up: If you wish to receive an email notifying you when a new issue of the Fern World Newsletter is published online, or to be updated with fern news more quickly than waiting for the mailings to come through the post, you will need to sign up to the online mailing list which can be found at the link below:

Front Cover Image : Pteris incompleta Photography : Liz or Alison Evans unless stated

Fern News Round-up 2011 BPS AGM 9th April 2011 This year’s AGM was held at the Dunchurch Park Hotel and Conference Centre, near Rugby. Appropriately we were in the Garden Rooms, with French windows opening on to a garden courtyard so that we could enjoy the glorious sunshine during breaks and at lunch time. Matt Busby is to be congratulated on finding such an excellent venue at short notice. Matt also gave two fascinating talks, on Ferns in an Urban Environment, and the Relic Flora of Birmingham Heath.

Above: Fern book sales at the AGM

Editor’s Note: See the Meetings Diary on Page 9 of this Newsletter for information about John Edgington’s ‘Ferns of Central London’ meeting to be held in July.

John Edgington, talking about the Fern Flora of Central London, gave us the good news that ferns are increasing in number in central London, perhaps as a result of the reduction in sulphur dioxide in the air. Tim Pyner did an admirable job in giving Fred Rumsey’s presentation on Alien Ferns in the British Flora. The AGM was completed in less than an hour, giving us more time for tea and catching up with friends. The meeting was well-attended and as usual we had the opportunity to stock up on BPS merchandise and be tempted by the book sales. Some of Ken Trewren’s ferns were available, and donations to MacMillan nurses for these ferns amounted to £78.66. The full report of the day will be in the Bulletin.

(Write-up by Alison Evans)

Contact the Publicity Team :

Madeira Field Meeting Here is a small selection of photos from the Spring Overseas Fern Meeting in Madeira! Eight members attended the meeting, which ran from the 19th to the 26th of March, and was led by Andrew Leonard. The full write-up will of course appear in the Bulletin.

Back: Peter Campion; Andrew Leonard; Bruce Brown; Sarah Campion Front: Barry Colville; Mattan Schout; Alison Evans; Ann Colville

Above: The Publicity and Marketing Officer is sent up a tree to get a picture of Elaphoglossum semicylindricum

Above: Time for refreshments! Left: Woodwardia radicans overhangs one of the dramatic and beautiful levada paths we experienced

Don’t forget the BPS Website :

Madeira Field Meeting

Above: Hymenophyllum tunbrigense Left: Asplenium lolegnamense

Above: The view from the hotel - we were blessed with beautiful weather throughout Right (top): Davallia canariensis Right: STOP - fern enthusiasts in the road!

Contact the Publicity Team :

Fern News Round-up 2011 Polypodium Hunting at Malham 5th & 6th of March The Yorkshire Group, with the Manchester and the North Midlands Group, held their first regional meeting of the year as a joint venture. It was a very well attended meeting with members coming from many other regional groups, as well as one attendee who came all the way from Poland especially for the Polypodium weekend! There was much excitement about the return of the “extra-long-snipping device” which has recently undergone a redesign. The second part of the weekend meeting was held at Manchester University in one of their microscope labs, so the specimens gathered on the previous day could be closely examined, and the hybrids could be identified. A wonderful start to the year’s meetings programme, skilfully led by Bruce Brown and Yvonne Golding.

Above: Here you can see Bruce Brown, leader of the Yorkshire Group, demonstrating the usefulness of the long snippers when trying to reach tricky fronds...

Left: However, some fronds could really only be reached by bravery alone!

Don’t forget the BPS Website :

Fern News Round-up 2011

Above: The field meeting at Malham was well attended - it was also the first group outing for Jasper the Border Collie!

Left: Malham’s famous limestone pavements, which are a haven for many species of plants.

Contact the Publicity Team :

Fern News Round-up 2011 The BPS Education Group have been working hard to help promote the Society and to increase people’s knowledge and awareness of ferns in general. As you may know, they have already produced the popular leaflet Fern Gardens of Scotland, and are working with the National Trust on several “fern blitzes” which are to take place over the next year. In the Autumn mailing there was a survey produced by the Education Group to find out what people were interested in learning more about. Only a very small number of people responded - just 17 in total - but the results of the survey to date can be seen below. The meetings committee say they intend to concentrate on horticulture from 2013 onwards. The survey is still open, so should any members who have not yet done so wish to register their thoughts on this subject, they can just follow the link below to the survey site:

(Figures correct as at 28 April 2011)

Don’t forget the BPS Website :

Dates for the Diary 2011 Regional Meetings July 9th: Around Arnside, May 21st: Moonwort Survey, near Reeth Yorkshire Group

Including Gaitbarrows NNR

Leader: Barry Wright

Contact: Peter Campion

Contact: Bruce Brown

July 20th: Dryopteris submontana and

May 28th: Wolfscote Dale, Derbyshire

the limestone ferns of Darren Fawr

Asplenium ceterach monitoring

Leaders / Contact: Brian & Sue Dockerill

Leader / Contact: Yvonne Golding

July 23rd: Bixley Decoy Pond and

June 11th: Noar Hill and Selborne, Hampshire

Ipswich Golf Course

Leader: Andrew Leonard Contact: Paul Ripley June 18th: Bitholmes Wood Stocksbridge Leader: Paul Ruston Contact: Bruce Brown June 25th: St Bees Head Leader: Mike Porter Contact: Peter Campion July 9th: Ferns of Central London Leader: John Edgington Contact: Paul Ripley Members are welcome to attend meetings outside their own regions - just contact the Regional Group leaders in advance to let them know!

Leader: Frances Haigh

Leader: Martin Rickard Contact: Tim Pyner July 30th: Denthead, Yorkshire Leader: Mike Canaway Contact: Bruce Brown August 6th: Hope Valley and Cave Dale Derbyshire Leader / Contact: Yvonne Golding August 13th: The Witherslack Valley Leader: Alec Greening Contact: Peter Campion

CORRECTION: August 20th: Teesdale Leader: Alison Evans Contact: Bruce Brown [This was omitted from the Spring mailing]

Contact the Publicity Team :

Dates for the Diary 2011 National Meetings

Other Events

June 3 - 5th: Exmoor National Meeting

June 3 - 5th: Gardening Scotland Flower Show, Edinburgh

Porlock Leader / Contact: Paul Ripley

July 1 - 3rd: Leicester and North

In our tour of garden shows this year we are attending this popular show in Edinburgh. See: Contact: Frank McGavigan

Derbyshire National Meeting Leader: Paul Ripley Contact: Yvonne Golding

August 5 - 9th: Perthshire and Angus Kindrogan Field Centre Leader: Heather McHaffie Contact: Frank McGavigan

August 18 - 21st: The Southport Flower Show Members are invited to help look after the BPS stand at this show, and will in return receive free entry to the event. If you grow ferns, you could consider entering your best specimens, as Southport is one of the few shows with amateur classes for ferns. Contact: Michael Hayward

September 24 - 25th: Ferns and Fossils Details of all the Meetings are also available on the BPS website at the link below:

or also on the Meetings Calendar:

The John Hope Gateway Centre, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh This will be a 2 day BPS event presented by the Education subcommittee with fern related displays and talks. Attendance will be free! Contact: Frank McGavigan

Don’t forget the BPS Website :

And finally... Thinking of joining the RHS? The Publicity and Marketing Team hope you have found this Fern World Newsletter interesting and enjoyable. Is there anything else you think we should know about, or maybe a topic that should be covered in the next issue? Please feel free to get in touch!

Regional Group Contact details: Yorkshire Fern Group Leader: Bruce Brown Email: South East Leader: Paul Ripley Email: East Anglia Leader: Tim Pyner Email: North West England Leader: Peter Campion Email: Cornwall Leader: Matt Stribley Email: Scotland Leader: Frank McGavigan Email: South Wales & Borders Leader: Brian Dockerill Email: Manchester & North Midlands Leader: Yvonne Golding Email:

The Royal Horticultural Society has a special offer available for members of Affiliated Societies (yes - that’s us at the BPS!) wishing to join RHS. The Treasurer of the BPS has received the following message: “As a thank you for sharing this passion for promoting horticulture, here’s a special offer when your members join RHS. They’ll enjoy 3 months free membership when they join by Direct Debit plus £10 worth of RHS vouchers to spend in our plant centres, shops and by mail order. They can join at a special price of £36.75 (price usually £49) :- either 

At RHS Gardens by quoting 3246

Or online at

Or call 0845 130 4646 quoting 3246 (lines are open 9am-5pm Mon to Fri)

This offer is valid until 31 October 2011. This offer applies to NEW RHS MEMBERS ONLY.” If any BPS members are interested in joining RHS, this would be a good and cheap opportunity to do so! RHS website:

Contact the Publicity Team :

Fern World Newsletter Issue 2  

The summer edition of Fern World - the online newsletter produced for members of the British Pteridological Society and fern enthusiasts eve...

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