There are about five different kinds of ferns around the yard.  They vary in the shades of green and have their individual pattern.  Have you watched them wave in the gentle breeze?  Some kinds do better than others in the shade.  When you look at the fern you can see how particular God is and you see only perfection.  We really enjoy all the many ferns.



     One extra special fern is the one in the garden center where there is another bigger fern beside it.  This fern has a black stem and the stems of the leaves grow in a swirl at the top of the black stem. It is smaller than most of the other ferns and is quite delicate looking.  Over the years the clump is very slowly making progress. 






















  Black -stemmed fern with a swirl at the top













              This fern is in the house.





 St. George's Terrace, Melbourne, Thursday, December 29, 1892

 "Word came from the company that were encamped in Fern Tree Gully, that they were desirous I should come--and as many others as could--to the Valley, twenty-five miles. The cars go within two miles of their encampment. We had but a few minutes to make our decision. As my head ached and I feared I could not write, I decided to go. Marian Davis and Emily accompanied me. Sister Maggie Hare, Sisters Daniells and Rousseau and Brother and Sister Salisbury went with us.                                

     We found the atmosphere was better than in Melbourne. All were much pleased to meet us and we were well entertained. Our dining tent was under a canopy. Tablecloths were spread upon the ground and the camp of more than thirty seated themselves upon the ground to enjoy their repast. Brother Prismall came while we were eating and he enjoyed the dinner with us. All ate as if they relished the food. Excellent raspberries were obtained fresh from the vines, and they were so nice and fresh, I enjoyed them much. There were new potatoes and green peas and rice pudding. All ate with good appetites.  

     Then preparations were made with determination that Sister White should be transported to Fern Tree Gully. But I did not favor this, but they made their preparations. Brother Faulkhead walked two miles to find a chair before he could obtain one. They then cut strong poles, fastened the poles with cords to the chair, and seated me in the chair. Brethren Faulkhead and Prismall were determined to be carriers. Brother Faulkhead was the taller. He led the way, and Brother Prismall followed, one taking hold of the poles before, the other behind, and they thus bore me along. After we left the trap Brother Stephen Belden led the pony nearly one mile; then the carriage could go no farther, and I was seated in my chair with the human charioteers to take me over the road. We thus traveled two miles--I unwilling to burden them, but they determined to persevere--over logs, fallen trees, and narrow passages cut between trees by Byron Belden and his father. Sometimes it required four men to keep the chair conveyance in safety, as they had to climb fallen trees, sometimes one and two feet high. It was a marvelous passage, such as I never attempted to travel over before.                                 

     We came into a level spot in Fern Tree Gully, and tarried a while. There were trees of every form and of various dimensions and heights, and the burden of nature was the perfect, beautiful ferns growing from the top of these fern trees. One tree stood out in distinctive beauty of perfection from all others. The formation of the ferns upon the top of this tree, about twenty feet in height, was more perfect than anything we afterwards had the privilege of seeing. I delight to carry in my mind the model of nature's perfection in Fern Tree Gully. It is a beautiful specimen of the Lord's work in its natural state. Surrounding it were fern trees of large growth, but this tree was a crown or circular in form, and in beautiful exactitude and order, so fresh in foliage of deep green, that I was assured in my own mind that it could not be excelled.   

     Now we had not reached the dense growth and the question was, Should we go forward or return? Brethren Faulkhead and Prismall were for advancing. I was perfectly satisfied with what I had already seen. I could take the picture and preserve it in my mind--one fern tree so perfect in form amid a vast number that were of uncouth proportions and wanting in perfection in fern tree loveliness.    

     The church may be compared to this growth of trees. Many of the fern trees grow in awkward, unlovely positions. Some gather to themselves the properties of the earth which they appropriate to fern tree life, in beauty and strength and perfection. Others were bending sideways, unable to stand erect. In others, the fern boughs were imperfect, irregular, wanting in perfection of form and maturity. Thus it is with the church members, in the formation of Christian characters. Some do not appropriate to themselves the precious promises of God, and the provisions made at infinite cost to Heaven that divine power might combine with human effort, that all that is evil should be discarded and overcome, and through faith in Jesus Christ, through watchfulness and prayer, they might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.  

     The brethren were not satisfied unless they took me the whole way, so on they went, in most inaccessible paths, until the journey was complete, and I stood under the shadow of the fern trees in the gully. There were the large trees covered with growing ferns, and it was very interesting to see the great height of these trees and their varied formation and manner of growth. There was revealed that young saplings had fastened themselves to the trunk of the fern tree and become one with it, growing into the tree and presenting entirely a different tree than the fern. Both were growing together. It was impossible to separate the one from the other unless the fern were much cut to pieces.  

     After viewing this wonderful production of nature as long as we thought safe, for it was quite damp in the forest of ferns, my bearers took up their burden, made their way to open ground, passed down the hill of thick, matted grass--a much shorter route than we came. We were not long descending the hill, and I gave my hearty thanks to those who were so full of perseverance to carry out the plans of their devising to have Sister White see Fern Tree Gully. I know they must be very tired, having carried me to the gully and back, no less than three miles.   

     All partook of dinner, then it was time to prepare to go to the cars. We rode to the cars, women sitting in the back of the carriage on the floor and making considerable sport of their situation. Emily walked the two miles and several other girls walked from choice. We found the cars crowded, but we would be only one hour and a half, which would be half past ten o'clock p.m. Elder Starr was waiting for us with horse and phaeton."

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