Primitive Plants

This series is an ode to the first plants that existed on planet Earth. These first, primitive land plants helped create an oxygen-rich atmosphere suitable for animal life. These images have two parts: forms that are in-focus pointing to fact, and parts that are ethereal and point to the mystery of life underpinning all evidence.

At the end of the Permian Period ( 251million years ago – before the Dinosaurs) there occurred the largest mass extinction Earth has ever known.

Fossil records show that the primitive plants we use in humid terrariums, such as Mosses and Ferns, were around before that mass extinction and continued to thrive after. They survived it. They covered the earth easily with spore reproduction and their ability to trap moisture.

Impressively, primitive land plants evolved into Angiosperms that bear flowers, fruits and seeds. These new plants could sustain animals through their stomachs, a more obvious use. (More obvious than breathing?) I find it fascinating that those original, primitive plant species continue to exist and serve a role in our complex web of life. They persist because they are relevant. Perhaps they will save our species from its own self-destructive folly in the future…?

PS. All images in this series were created by shooting through the glass walls of terrariums I built with my two daughters.

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