Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com

Kaleidoscopic Ferns

By Rebecca Drew

STUNNING psychedelic images show ferns in brightly coloured kaleidoscopic patterns as you have never seen them before.

Fern sorus. Fluorescence light micrograph of a sorus on the underside of a fern frond. A sorus is a cluster of spore-producing receptacles called sporangia (green, blue and brown). The sporangia are protected under an umbrella-like scale called an indusium (yellow) until they are mature. Each sporangium is packed with spores (brown), which are the fern's reproductive cells. A rim of thick-walled cells, the annulus (green), functions to open and rapidly close each sporangium when the spores are mature, releasing them into the environment.  Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com
Fern sorus. Fluorescence light micrograph of a sorus on the underside of a fern frond. A sorus is a cluster of spore-producing receptacles called sporangia (green, blue and brown). The sporangia are protected under an umbrella-like scale called an indusium (yellow) until they are mature. Each sporangium is packed with spores (brown), which are the fern’s reproductive cells. A rim of thick-walled cells, the annulus (green), functions to open and rapidly close each sporangium when the spores are mature, releasing them into the environment.
Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com

The spectacular up close fluorescence light micrograph pictures show an explosion of colour in the form of blazing blue and green sporangia from the underside of the fern’s frond. Other shots show bright yellow and green spores that appear to resemble a burning sun.

Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com
Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com

The trippy photographs were taken by computer system engineer and amateur microscopist and astronomer, Rogelio Moreno from Panama where he gathered the fern samples. Rogelio has been practicing photomicrography since 2009.

“I am curious and I am always looking at things under the microscope with different illumination techniques,” said Rogelio.

“One day I picked up a fern leaf from my wife’s garden and to my surprise it showed beautiful colours under fluorescence by using ultra-violet light as my light source.

“Since that day I fell in love of them.”

Fern sporangium. Fluorescence light micrograph of sporangium (spore case) from the underside of a fern frond. Sporangia are spore-producing receptacles found in clusters called sori. Each sporangium is packed with spores (blue), which are the fern's reproductive cells. A rim of thick-walled cells, the annulus (green), functions to open and rapidly close each sporangium when the spores are mature, releasing them into the environment.  Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com
Fern sporangium. Fluorescence light micrograph of sporangium (spore case) from the underside of a fern frond. Sporangia are spore-producing receptacles found in clusters called sori. Each sporangium is packed with spores (blue), which are the fern’s reproductive cells. A rim of thick-walled cells, the annulus (green), functions to open and rapidly close each sporangium when the spores are mature, releasing them into the environment.
Rogelio Moreno / SPL / mediadrumworld.com

Ferns are an evergreen plant that can be found all over the UK all year round. The fern’s divided leaves are called fronds and are responsible for the plant’s photosynthesis.

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