Ansell/Wang silver fern, Cameron Sanders' fern (, Dave Clark's All Blacks fern, Flag, Kyle Lockwood's fern, Silver fern

Fern favourite – but which fern?

Friday night’s Close Up poll of 12341 viewers was a clear sign that when New Zealand changes its flag, it’ll be to a design featuring the silver fern.

Naturally, I’m keen to find out whether Kenneth’s and my design is in with a chance of being that fern.

So I’m testing it here against what I believe are the three most popular contenders: Cameron Sanders’ fern, Dave Clark’s All Blacks logo, and the fern from the well-supported Kyle Lockwood flag.

For ease of comparison only, I’ve put them all on a black background. (I’ve already canvassed people’s colour preferences in this poll.)

To avoid accusations of vote-rigging and bias by adoring readers (I wish), I invite other bloggers, Facebookers etc. to click Share This below and paste this poll into your site.

It’ll be interesting to see whether voting patterns are the same on all sites.

Oh, and if you don’t want a silver fern flag, it would be great if you could  respect the democratic rights of those who do – and by all means vote if you’d like to.

12 thoughts on “Fern favourite – but which fern?

  1. I believe the fern flag provides the best opportunity to unite New Zealanders and that to me is fundamental for us to move forward as a country. However I’m not sure that a black background is the answer and we should be able to come up with a more uplifting colour scheme that reflects our hope for the future. Black for our sports teams is fine because we use it (fear!) to our advantage!

    Thanks Alastair. Although this post is specifically about fern designs, not colourschemes, I agree that black would be a hard sell.

    And not because it’s not popular (my previous poll confirmed that it undoubtedly is), but because it’s also very unpopular with many – especially the many who seem to hate rugby!

    The Canadian flag, by contrast, is loved by many and loathed by few. I suspect that’s the sort of positive/negative ratio our flag would need to have.

    As to the fern, its positive ratings are high and hopefully its negatives are not as high as those for the colour black.

    It was good to see John Key supporting a fern flag on Breakfast this morning.

  2. Goo at family to choose to avoid bias

    Family would probably be biased the other way, Michael!

  3. The silver/white fern on a black background is already the de facto alternative. It’s not critical what actual fern design is used, the most practical/visual should be chosen.

    And it’s not just All Blacks. There was a photo in Saturday’s ODT of a Winter Olympics village accommodation block, with two UK Union things and a “NZ flag” – of course the fern on black (I can’t find an online link).

    I’ve had a look into different design ideas, especially on keeping it similar to the current flag, but I think a complete change away from that is the best approach.

    My own view, Pete, is that the actual rendition of the fern as a piece of design matters very much.

    But I accept that many hold your view that a fern is a fern is a fern.

    Like you, I can’t see much point in tinkering with the flag, but New Zealanders are generally terrified of change, so a fern on blue with red stars may be the only way to get any sort of change.

    Thanks for taking part.

  4. Please! Lets get on with it New Zealand. Dave Clarks design is clear and will be great to work with in any situation

    31 of the first 33 voters beg to differ, Dorenda. They seem to be saying that when it comes to ferns, rounded looks better than sharp.

  5. G’day John,
    It would be true to say the present national flag
    is certainly not the most popular if you take into
    account all other votes.
    If a striking fern flag design was produced then it
    might just edge out the bland black and white design
    that was still way ahead of all other alternatives.
    Good Luck

    The CloseUp viewers weren’t asked to vote on background colours, or indeed on the style of fern, Mike (though no doubt some did).

    So far the All Blacks design which they used to represent the silver fern is not proving too popular here, and the colour black was only second to blue in my earlier poll.

    I think these polls will be a good way to get clear on the various elements, and can be used in evidence to those who may one day make the final decision.

  6. If we went with Cameron’s, we’d definitely have the most stylish flag in the world, but I don’t think that fern works well except on its own on black – which I don’t prefer.

    Kyle’s wins for me, partly for being on my preferred design, but also for being the most realistic fern rendition.

    Yours would be a close second John. I’d still be keen to see Kyle’s Red/White/Black flag with your fern on for comparison. 🙂

    Kyle’s is a good design, Peter, and a clear leader. The NZRU might need to do some block-voting for their logo!

  7. Your silver fern on a black flag. Both Bruce and I have travelled extensively and very few people from other countries, apart from Aussie, know the difference between our current flag and the Aussie flag but when you show them a silver or white fern on a black flag they immediately know where you are from.
    Unfortunately for people who are not into rugby the black and white/silver colours are associated with N.Z. so we feel it best to stick with those colours.
    We know this is poll is not about colour but those are our thoughts.

    Thanks Carolynn. It’s a sad reality that there’s such a hostility towards rugby despite the international profile it’s brought NZ. I’m not surprised Bruce favours the fern on black, having once worn it.

    What does he think of the All Blacks fern?

  8. (c) is clearly the superior rendering of a fern, but I’m still convinced that as a symbol for a new flag it’s naff as all get out.

    Thanks for taking part, James.

  9. See – the trouble is that, to me, they all look like variations on the All Blacks logo.

    I know, I know, maybe not on a black background.

    But still – from a distance the logo and the flag motif will be so similar as to be indistinguishable.

    Oh – and I’m totally not in favour of changing the flag – not until we squeeze some treaty settlement cash out of the UK – who fucked us all in the ass royally with the Treaty, then buggered off.

    First cash, then new flag.

    Then maybe some manners, Rock :-). (I have no problem with what you say, but please watch how you say it.)

    Interesting that your linguistic role model Hone Harawira favours a fern flag.

  10. When I first heard that we may be in for a flag change, I was dead against it but have now changed my mind. And I think if an international survey was to be done on who knows where New Zealand is or who the All Blacks are the out come would be interesting, and for that reason maybe we should use Dave Clark’s design.

  11. has no one seen a real silver fern? they are all over the place. They look nothing like any of these. Small pinnae, rapidly getting bigger, before heading smaller down to the tip. All these designs fail to correctly show the shape.

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