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Unkown Plant

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Unkown Plant

Postby rizwana » Apr 24, 2014 1:22 am

Hello,
We have this plant growing in our backyard. Does anyone know what its called?

Image
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby soccermomof3 » Apr 24, 2014 7:50 am

I'm no expert, but that's how my ferns look right now.
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby tricone » Apr 24, 2014 10:03 am

Possibly ostrich ferns? The fronds look to be about the right shape

You can eat the fiddleheads when they come up, they're lovely fried in butter. Make sure it's definitely an ostrich fern before you try that though!
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby davefrombc » Apr 24, 2014 11:46 am

It is definitely one of the fern species. Some produce edible "fiddleheads" in spring, but others are toxic or carcinogenic; so don't try the fiddleheads until the species has been definitely identified. Keep that picture , and when the new growth comes , get a good photo of it and then ask your nearest University botany department for an id on it .. Most will reply , and many offer forums for gardeners.
Here is the link to the UBC's Botanical Garden forum http://www.botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/forums/
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby JosieO » Apr 24, 2014 1:27 pm

davefrombc i'm so jealous that you have z7/8.
I was awe struck to see ferns in the grocery store here in QC. Then walking through the forest and even near my home I found ferns growing like this. Didn't know that they were edible before. I'm glad you said some are poisonous. It put the breaks on me going fern shopping in the woods.
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby davefrombc » Apr 24, 2014 3:16 pm

There are edible species in Quebec, abut also bracken fern which is not .. Both the edibles and inedibles look much the same in the fiddlehead stage , so positively identifying them is necessary. Much like the mushroom family , identity is the key; although the ferns don't have any species that are as extremely dangerous as the fungi ( at least as far as I know).
There are many excellent wild foods available across North America .. The trick is to identify them and know if there are any similar looking dangerous plants to watch out for.
We do have very mild winters compared to elsewhere in Canada and the northern US, but the amount of rain and cloudy skies can still be very depressing at times...We do enjoy telling our less fortunate friends that "At least we don't have to shovel the rain ", and we do get some very nasty comments when we post pix of green grass and flowers when our friends are up to their eyebrows in snow and -40 wind chills :twisted:
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby rizwana » Apr 24, 2014 10:00 pm

Thank you so much for the replies everyone! :D
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Re: Unkown Plant

Postby tricone » Apr 25, 2014 12:30 pm

JosieO wrote:davefrombc i'm so jealous that you have z7/8.
I was awe struck to see ferns in the grocery store here in QC.

Fiddleheads are spectacular, I spend a lot of time in eastern Quebec and New Brunswick and have picked them myself in the Gaspe, Madawaska, upper Miramichi etc. They are quite the delicacy in rural areas out that way!

They are relatively easy to identify based on the overall shape of their fronds, but make sure you know for sure first. Alternatively just buy some ostrich ferns from a garden centre and farm them in your garden - a great way to get something edible out of an otherwise useless shady patch!

I don't think eating the wrong ferns is especially bad in a one-off event but I'm told there is a cancer risk if you eat them in a prolonged fashion.
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