How many people look at ground cover and see trees? The same is true with ferns and the plants that trail from their hanging baskets. Well, at the risk of sounding immodest, I do.

There is an exhibit at the Desert Museum in Tucson, Arizona that is a true-to-scale relief globe of Earth. The challenge for visitors is to find Mount Everest by touch. It’s not as easy as one might imagine. While not as smooth and polished as a bowling ball, our planet, when scaled down to the approximate size of a beach ball, is hardly distinguishable in texture from a bowling ball and far, far smoother than a golf ball. Why, then, be surprised when a leaflet from a single fern frond looks a bit like a giant Sequoia?