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Bracken is now abundant in most parts of the UK. It dominates large areas of acid ground such as the Welsh mountains and it can dominate small areas of the New Forest heaths.

Bracken has long been used as packing and padding — it was used as bedding for cattle and a cushioning for breakables during transporting. Now it is used to make bracken mulch for bulking out and aerating garden soil.

Bracken can be found almost anywhere that is uncultivated in and around the New Forest from May until September. Over the winter the dead leaves often cover the ground where it grows.

ID Tip

ID Tip

Bracken is a fern and can be told from other ferns by the fact that it grows in dense patches.

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