It is my quest, this summer, to learn the ferns common to the low country. I studied them while enrolled in the SC Master Naturalist program but, there was so much I was studying, that I didn't have the time to let each one's characteristics shine in my mind.
The only way I know to do this is to spend time in the field, observing and drawing. I can let my pencil dance along the paper as my eye traces the outline of each Pinna and Pinnule, (ah yes, there's the vocabulary to learn too...). It's a great way to get lost in time. Two hours flew by while I drew and painted the marsh fern. Then, once in the studio, research began concerning the Leafroller Moth. My naturalist friend, Marvin Bouknight, first answered my question about what critter folded over the tops of the ferns. I had to laugh when he said the 'Leafroller' Moth. I like it when science doesn't complicate things. The latin names are confusing enough! He said that it was a diminutive moth. I guess so! And, once I saw a picture of one on the internet (a great research tool) I realized I saw one of these moths last year! I love it when I can tie things together :)