As they emerge through the fertile, wet April soil, they grown and unfurl quickly, sometimes lasting just a few days in their furled up stage. Lucky for fiddlehead fans, ostrich ferns are fairly common, especially in temperate woodland areas and near streams.
Wikipedia of course has a fiddlehead entry, Michigan-based food grower Earthy Delights has better info. Fiddleheads are young ferns and are collected when they are under 6 inches and are a great cooked vegetable.
They grow in dense clumps, from the northern plains states to the east coast of the United States and throughout most of Canada. Tightly coiled and adorned with a flaky brown protective coating from the season before, these whimsical and almost magical-looking baby plants can be carefully harvested and enjoyed using the …
Fiddleheads can be found in Michigan . While morels get the most love at this time of year, fiddleheads are another tasty treat that’s popping up in the woods of Michigan. It's not necessary to forage them yourself because fiddleheads may be found at markets that specialize in wild foods. Fiddleheads are ferns before they become ferns. Fiddlehead ferns are the curly rich green shoots of a fern that emerge from the ground.
This morel mushroom hunting site reported Fiddleheads in Berrien County while the Wild West Michigan blog f ound the plant in the Grand Rapids area. We walked through the woods scanning the ground for fiddleheads but unfortunately none could be found.
They are also supposed to be quite tasty.
A lecture series by the Michigan State Extension in the Upper Peninsula included fiddleheads. They are high in antioxidants, a good source for Omega 3 and Omega 6 and contain iron and fiber.
They say: A Fiddlehead is a fern so young and new that it hasn’t yet “unfurled” and opened its leaves.
They are the furled up stage of a fern when they just start to shoot through the ground in spring.
Fiddlehead Fern Forest, photo by otisourcat.