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(Posted for Nathan Myhrvold, who is not currently subscribed.)
I'm building a new house, and for the landscaping I want to use Mesozoic plants
- plants dinosaurs would have had under foot, or the closest living relatives I
can find. Since I live in Seattle, the plants need to tolerate frost and
occasional snow - the area is climate zone 8. Another requirement is that the
plant be available - ideally from nurseries.
I am looking for recommendations of plants to use.
So far, I have spent the most time looking for trees, and I have a fair number
(see below). Tree ferns are an important part of the Mesozoic flora that is
under represented in modern North America temperate flora. Fortunately there
are tree ferns from Tasmania, New Zealand and South Africa that are cold
adapted. Cycads are a similar challenge - most are tropical, but there are a
number that cold tolerant enough for my area.
I have spent less time on smaller plants. Obviously, there are many small
ferns available, so I don't need help finding these. I don't have any good
examples so far of primitive angiosperms - i.e. the first flowering plants.
I would appreciate any comments, or recommendations of other Mesozoic related
plants. I am most interested in plants for which there is a strong fossil
evidence, ideally in association with dinosaurs.
Here are plants that I have already identifed:
Cercidiphyllum japonicum Katsura
Araucaria araucana Monkey Puzzle
Ginkgo biloba Gingkgo
Metasequoia glyptostroboides Dawn Redwood
Cryptomeria Japonica Japanese Cryptomeria
Dicksonia antarctica Tasmanian Tree Fern
Cyathea dregei South African Tree Fern
Cyathea medullaris Black Tree Fern
Cyathea dealbata NZ National Plant
Dicksonia squarrosa Wheki
Dicksonia fibrosa Golden Tree Fern
Macrozamia moorei Moore's Cycad
Cycas revoluta Sago "Palm", King Sago
Cycas tiatungensis Prince Sago, Emperor Sago
Dioon edule Virgin's Palm (cycad)
Dioon spinulosum Giant Dioon
Encephalartos sp South African Cycads
Equisetum sp Horsetails
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