The Fern Project, Undergraduate Research

Originally shot as a complement to Rudi Kiefer’s article A Fern Commitment in the Summer 2011 issue of Brenau Window (link to PDF) this video helps illustrate the efforts of Brenau University faculty, students and staff to create environmental change. Undergraduate students traveled southto  the three remaining counties in Georgia near the Florida border where the endangered fern species marl spleenwort (Asplenium heterosiliens) still grows. Intense work and research growth and reproduction of the marl spleenwort in the laboratory, which was a feat never before accomplished. The ultimate aim of the project was to find a strategy for reproducing these plants in captivity in hope of eventually transplanting them back to the wild and boosting the native population.

The Fern Project became a springboard for erecting a greenhouse and launching Brenau’s Endangered Plant Program which seeks to reproduce native plants and reintroduce them to their native environments.  These programs give undergraduates at Brenau the rare opportunity to conduct important new research with local and global significance  and to do something to make our world a better place in a real and tangible way.

Further reading:
A Fern Commitment in the Summer 2011 issue of Brenau Window (link to PDF)
Greenhouse dedication marks first step to Brenau bio-science center
College of Health & Science presents Graduate Research Day

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