Checklist of the Ferns, Natural Falls State Park

Bruce A. Smith


Natural Falls State Park, formerly known as Dripping Springs is located in northeast Oklahoma. The park’s natural beauty and flora have attracted visitors since 1907. In a 1988 visit to the Oklahoma State University Herbarium, I noticed that several herbarium sheets of ferns were collected from Dripping Springs. This was intriguing and made me want to visit the area. Due to my interest in floristics and taxonomy, Natural Falls State Park seemed the perfect place to create a checklist of ferns. Thus, the objective of this study was to create an inventory of the ferns of Dripping Springs using my collection and the collections and observations from earlier botanists. A systematic collection of the ferns of Dripping Springs was conducted on August 7, 1998, October 15, 1998, and October 20, 2001. Using standard taxonomic methods, each plant was identified to species and subsequently inventoried. In three days of collecting, 17 species from 6 families and 12 genera were encountered. Since 1925 a total of 19 species from 6 families and 12 genera have been reported to occur.

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