Rock Creek Area

The tiny Common Moonwort (Botrychium lunaria) is named after its leaves - but the leaflets shaped like a half-moon behind the fertile part are missing! This is the fertile part of the leaf with rounded, grapelike clusters of sporangia that contain the spores. The fern dies down at the end of summer and frequently lies dormant for several seasons before re-appearing. Moonwort was once an ingredient of witches’ and alchemists’ brews in centuries past.