One thing you do not see in the pine barrens of Long Island in New York is ferns growing on the trunks of trees. But here in Florida it is a common sight. And recently, these ferns caught my eye and I decided to photograph them growing on the bark of live oak trees and on the limestone boulders that lay near the shore of Lake Tsala Apopka. These ferns are epiphytes (air plants). Air plants absorb nutrients and moisture from the air. The fern’s rhizomes (“roots”) grasp tree trunks and boulders.
A week later, I decided to go back and take more photographs and to my surprise the ferns were withered, dead. The once vibrant green plant was now gray and desiccated. But this is the resurrection fern, a species that survives drought by shriveling and comes to life within hours of a rainfall. I had photographed it right after a heavy rainfall and returned during a dry period with temperatures soared in the 80’s and low humidity. It is kind of like me when I worked, tired and drained and when I returned from vacation I was full of vim and vigor!