Fern Frozen Against A Mossy Moor

Frost-covered fern lying on moss

An old, unflattering rhyme I’ve never liked calls my home town’s moors bleak and barren. Perhaps if you don’t like moorland or have never taken the time to walk on it, you might think so. I suppose some people might care little for what walkers can find on a winter day up there by venturing a few steps off the path.

If you follow my blog you can expect to see brighter, bolder pictures of plant combinations taken in gardens or at flower shows, where skilled, creative hands have put together their best for public consumption.

I’m not sure you’ll see any plant combination I could look at with much more pleasure than this.

In the textures of the frozen vegetation, I seem to see fabric: the fern becomes lace; the moss, wool or velvet. The colours are alluring too: sage, mint and chocolate, the latter frosted to mink. Nothing is jazzy, all is harmonious. I’d love something to wear in a design inspired by this.

It may appear haphazard – there are a few wayward stems, but the fern and strands of grass have surrendered to the frost gracefully and a natural order is appearing – of sorts. Towards the top left, a thaw has started. 

I’m adding in a similar shot taken a few minutes later as it helps highlight the luxury and movement in the first shot:

Fern frosted against wood

The frost has laid a heavier hand in this one, and the fern is fractured in places, but the effect was still interesting enough to persuade me take my gloves off again on a cold winter’s day.

33 Replies to “Fern Frozen Against A Mossy Moor”

  1. Living in Maine, I have a special fondness for stark beauty, for frosty photos. So I really liked the pictures of the ferns. If your fingers can stand the cold, keep snapping those pictures.

    1. I sometimes wish we had more snow and frost so I could practice taking pictures, but I have a lot of respect for the practicalities wintry conditions bring – burst pipes, tricky driving conditions, etc.

  2. Bleak and barren? Do you believe it was written by a native, or at least someone who should have a better appreciation for them, or are they really bleak and barren?

    1. I think of it as a taunt from a neighbouring town – that’s the way I was introduced to the rhyme as a child. They aren’t bleak to me, but I can see that someone from elsewhere might need time for their eyes to tune into the landscape. Think of ferns, wild blueberries (wimberries), heather, gorse, the odd rugosa, blackberry or raspberry here and there…

      1. I resent how my town is often referred to as a ‘suburb’ of San Jose. Long before we even developed our famously snooty attitude (and long before my time), we prided ourselves on being the major town in the Santa Clara Valley, . . . . and that San Jose was okay too.
        One thing that really makes natives cringe is the term ‘Silicon Valley’. YUCK!

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