A Lush Fernery in Far Northern Wisconsin - Part 1

Ferns have held a particular fascination from me ever since I was a kid. A friend of the family was a lady who worked for the Field Museum in Chicago. On many weekends we would join her family on a fossil collecting adventure to the strip mines in northern Illinois where she showed us how to scour the weathered spoil heaps for particular reddish-brown nodules known as concretions.

Several carefully-placed hammer blows would cause the stone to split in half, sometimes revealing within a delicately preserved fern frond which had arrived in my eager hands as a time capsule from the lost world of the Coal Age around 300 million years ago. Ever since then ferns have evoked prehistory for me and a longing to see and understand what has been lost for eons.

Their fractal patterns also appeal to my aesthetic sensibilities and are also well suited to being used as a meditative aid in discerning the nature of the universal creative force.


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Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe College (LCOOC) is a non-profit Ojibwe tribal community college.  We are an open-door institution which welcomes anyone who would like to work toward a better tomorrow.  LCOOC does not discriminate based upon race and will not deny admission to any Native student regardless of tribal enrollment or affiliation. We are compliant with Title IX which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.


LCO Ojibwe College
13466 W. Trepania Rd.
Hayward, WI 54843


Phone: 715.634.4790
Toll-Free: 888.526.6221
Fax: 715.634.5049

LCOOC Sustainable Agriculture Research Station

13457W Froemel Rd.

Hayward, WI 54843


Phone: 715.634.9666


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