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Rarahu / Bracken (Pteridium esculentum)

Last Modified: 30-10-2020 16:06

© Christopher Cookson  License this image

Rarahu / Bracken (Pteridium esculentum) is a common weedy fern found throughout New Zealand that provided a significant food source for Māori. Bracken is an aggressive coloniser of open land and is toxic to stock, in addition to being resistant to most herbicides. The deeply buried starchy rhyzomes that give bracken its food value also help it resist fire, so that bracken can readily colonise burnt areas and will suppress exotic pasture grasses given the opportunity. Fires caused first by Māori and later European colonists caused bracken to colonise large areas of New Zealand, becoming one of the country's most abundant native plant species.

The examples shown were observed in the Wither Hills Farm Park.

Location: Latitude: -41.557178 Longitude: 173.977753

Image Date: 30/6/2020

Photographer: Christopher Cookson

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