The Forest Primeval

Time flies by and I fear I will always be behind from now on, but, I have a few things for you. This was my submission to Leanne’s Monochrome Madness this week.

Our west coast forest floors are laden with the ancient fern while giant fir trees keep the sky from collapsing. Ferns, cycads and tree ferns have been around for  300 million years since they first sprang up in the savage paleozoic garden.

In the Devonian period, some trees grew to over 30 meters. Dinosaurs didn’t arrive until the mesozoic era and flowers only came into being during the cretaceous period but insects had already appeared (Devonian) and often grew  to a meter long although they may have been wingless for a further mere 100 million years. Some arachnid ancestors (spiders) had 6 inch legs. They would definitely have been unwelcome guests at a picnic.

dragonflies have been around for eons and may have grown to monster size  with a 2 ft wingspan, 300 million years ago

As I mentioned in a previous post, Vancouver Island was once covered by a shallow sea where great marine reptiles lived but by the Cenozoic the earth had shifted again and land had risen up. These amazing creatures can now be found beside river banks and highways. Plesiosaur, Mosasaur, and ichthyosaur bones have all been located at the confluence of the Puntledge and Brown rivers up island, as well as huge ancient cephalopods like Amonites. Many are on display in the Courtney Museum.  Slabs of fossilized ferns have been found in the shale of the Nanaimo area and many have been polished and lacquered into coffee table tops by those lucky enough to find them

fossil vegetation.jpg

one of my own finds

tree fern at Hatley Gardens

ancient forest

old growth, MacMillan Forest up island

We are but a moment’s sunlight, fading in the grass