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Whisk Ferns. Jordan Jackson- Text Research/Development Zach Shriwise-Image Research/Development Kyle Cota- Product Representative Pat Lewandowski- Technical Support. Hr. 5 April 9 2009. Psilophyta: . The Phylum name is Psilophyta

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Whisk Ferns

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whisk ferns

Whisk Ferns

Jordan Jackson- Text Research/Development

Zach Shriwise-Image Research/Development

Kyle Cota- Product Representative

Pat Lewandowski- Technical Support

Hr. 5 April 9 2009

  • The Phylum name is Psilophyta
  • This plant emerged in the Upper Silurian and Devonian periods during the Ordovician era.
biomes and habitat
Biomes and Habitat
  • The Psilophyta still living today are being found in damp, rich solis of tropical and subtropical regions, such as Hawaii, Florida, Texas or the islands of the Caribbean.
long term changes
Long Term Changes
  • In place of roots, the whisk fern has rhizomes (aka: modified underground stems). This is used to obtain the necessary nutrients because the plants does not have leaves. Because of the absence of roots, rhizomes produce rhizoids which act as root hairs.
  • The whisk ferns have developed mycorrhizal associations because of the absence of true roots.
  • In Whisk Ferns, an alternation of gerneration results in a dominant sporocyte plant prodcuing alike spores (homosporous) which germinate to form haploid gametophytes.
  • The underground gametophyte develops archegonia, each with one egg, and antheridia with flagellated sperm
  • After fertilization, a dipolid zygote forms, which eventually develops into a sporophyte plant.
life cycle
Life Cycle



**In ferns, the sporophyte is much bigger and longer lived than the gametophyte.**


Psilophyta also lack roots, instead they have rhizomes.

  • All psilophyta share a charcteristic: because they lack leaves, these plants have small out growths called enations.


  • In the life cycle, the sporophyte sprouts out of the gametophyte, which provides nutrition, after fertilization.
  • Whisk ferns like the warm weather of the tropics and subtropics. They are native to the southeastern region of the United States, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. In the United States, whisk ferns can be found in swamplands and dry rocky cliffs from North Carolina to Oklahoma. Whisk Ferns form large clumps in crooks and nannies of trees and are occasionally terrestrial in moist hammocks and well-mulched flower beds
level of diversity
Level of Diversity
  • Today there are 20,000 different plants in the phylum Psilophyta. They are still found mainly in tropical regions of Florida and Texas.
economic health benefits
Economic/Health Benefits
  • Ferns are used as a biological fertilizer because of their ability to fix nitrogen from air into other compounds to be used by plants
  • Some are used for food
  • Medicinal value: can be used to clean out cuts
  • Dittmer, Howard J. Phylogeny and Form in the Plant Kingdom. Toronto: D. Van Nostrand Company (Canada), Ltd., 1964.
  • Foster, A.S. and Gifford, E.M. Jr. 1974. Comparative Morphology of Vascular Plants. The Psilopsida. San Francisco, CA: W.H. Freeman and Company.
  • Bates, K. (2009). "Psilophyta." In Britannica Online. Retrieved April 13, 2009, from http://http://www.biologie/b-online.com.