Fern Allies: Flat-branched Tree-clubmoss

Photo of Flat-branched Tree-clubmoss

Like true ferns, fern allies are vascular plants who produce spores rather than flowers and seeds.  One of the more common types in New England is Flat-branched Tree-clubmoss (Dendrolycopodium obscurum), referred to by many as Princess-pine or Ground-pine.  This plant grows rather slowly, so while you might be tempted to gather a bunch to use as handsome holiday decorations, I recommend allowing them to retain their evergreen, ankle-high niche on the forest floor.  There you can enjoy them year-round.

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