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Ferns. Kaiti Xouris, Preston Hickson,Taylor Contini, Nelly Kruglyak. Origins. Phylum: Pterophyta – consists of about 11,000 species Lower Devonian Tropical Biome All but dry land. Evolution of the Fern.

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Kaiti Xouris, Preston Hickson,Taylor Contini, Nelly Kruglyak



  • Phylum: Pterophyta – consists of about 11,000 species

  • Lower Devonian

  • Tropical Biome

  • All but dry land

Evolution of the fern

Evolution of the Fern

  • Some botanists believe that the ferns are descendants of the Rhyniopsida, an extinct group of free-sporing plants.

  • Originated in the Silurian period (about 430 million years ago) and went extinct in the mid-Devonian period (about 370 million years ago).

  • ferns were the first plants to have megaphylls. Megaphyll: a leaf with a complex system of branched veins.

  • It is believed by botanists that ferns developed megaphylls by developing a flattened and webbed version of the simple, three-dimensional branching system of the Rhyniopsida. The evolution of the megaphyll was a major event in plant evolution

  • Almost all major types of plants now possess megaphylls.

Key plant structures

Key Plant Structures

Life cycle

Life Cycle


Life cycle continued

Life Cycle (continued)



  • Starts as 2n sporophyte

  • Sporangia is created to go through meiosis to create a haploid cell

  • sporangia grouped together in clusters called sori (sorus, singular) on the undersides of the leaves

Health benefits of ferns

Health Benefits of Ferns

  • Maidenhair ferns: used to make cough syrups.

  • Oak fern: aides arthritis as well as respiratory problems.

  • Wall rue: grows in rock crevices, thought to cure swollen glands,

  • Some ferns have been used to cure certain snake bites.

Fern habitats

Fern Habitats

  • Some Ferns have adapted to dry habitats.

  • The majority of the species prefer wet and shady climates for optimal growth and development.



Asplenium platyneuron

Athyrium filix-femina var. angustum



Onoclea sensibilis

Polystichum acrostichoides



  • Gametophyte is independent from the sporophyte

  • Sporophyte is dependant on the Gametophyte.

  • The gametophyte has the ability to grow individually and independently from the sporophyte,

  • It is impossible for the sporophyte to grow as a singular unit.





  • http://images.wildmadagascar.org/pictures/masoala/tree_ferns_bromeliads_0.JPG

  • http://hcs.osu.edu/hcs300/svp2.htm

  • http://www.utm.edu/departments/cens/biology/rirwin/pterophyta.htm

  • http://science.jrank.org/pages/2685/Ferns-Evolution.html

  • http://8e.devbio.com/images/ch20/01.PLC.02.thumb.jpg

  • http://www.arthurhaines.com/Florae_Novae_Angliae/Polypodiaceae/Asplenium-platyneuron-sori.jpg

  • http://www.biol.vt.edu/digital_atlas/media/images/plants/originals/Athyrium_filix-femina_var_asplenioides2%23835c%23.jpg

  • http://www.ct-botanical-society.org/ferns/fernpics/onocleasens_frond.jpg

  • http://gcuonline.georgian.edu/gross/biodiversity/phylum.htm

  • http://www.clintonnaturecenter.org/Christmasfernsori052307.jpg

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