Plant Family / Ferns


Ferns, Shade plants, Wet soil Plants, Athyrium, Blechnum, Dryopteris, Osmunda, Woodwardia, Polystichum, evergreen ferns,


Ferns come in an amazing array of texture, color, sizes and shapes. Easy to grow and quite versatile, they add beauty to almost any spot in the garden. While most ferns enjoy part shade or dappled sunlight, there are many which will also perform well in sunny locations, provided they get enough water. Most ferns are slow growing and may take several years to reach their mature size. Requiring minimal maintenance throughout the year, they offer gardeners plenty of attractive planting options!

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Great Plant Combination Ideas with Ferns

Asplenium scolopendrium (Hart's Tongue Fern)

Noted for the straight, pure line of its fronds and its tropical appearance, Asplenium scolopendrium (Hart's Tongue Fern) is an evergreen fern forming a pretty rosette of arching, strap-shaped, bright green fronds.

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Athyrium niponicum var. pictum 'Regal Red' (Painted Lady Fern)

Truly ornamental, Athyrium niponicum var. pictum 'Metallicum' (Japanese Painted Fern) is a very elegant deciduous fern forming a pretty rosette of arching, strikingly refined, lance-shaped, bipinnate fronds. The fronds are silvery gray, almost metallic, with green highlights and subtle burgundy veination.

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Blechnum spicant (Hard Fern)

Noted for its unique and distinctive type of fronds, Blechnum spicant (Hard Fern) is a charming, tufted, evergreen fern with interesting foliage texture. While its evergreen sterile fronds spread horizontally from a basal tuft, to form a neat arching mound of finely cut foliage, its fertile fronds rise straight up above this mound before drying out and withering away in fall.

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Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' (Autumn Fern)

Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' (Autumn Fern) is an evergreen fern with strikingly orange-red new fronds in spring, which contrast beautifully with the shiny, dark green, mature fronds. Fading to lustrous summer green as the season progresses, the bipinnate, triangular blades draw attention again in fall with their bright red ripe spores (sori) on their undersides.

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Dryopteris filix-mas (Male Fern)

Dryopteris filix-mas (Male Fern) is a large, deciduous fern with erect, stout rhizomes supporting graceful bouquets of lance-shaped, dull green fronds. Tapering at the base, each frond (blade) is pinnate-pinnatifid with 20-30 pairs of long-pointed leaflets per blade. Turning coppery in fall, this most adaptable and robust fern thrives on neglect and is pest and disease free.

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Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich Fern)

Resembling long, feathery Ostrich plumes, Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich Fern) is an elegant, upright to arching, deciduous fern with showy, finely dissected, fresh green sterile fronds

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Osmunda cinnamomea (Cinnamon Fern)

Thriving in moist areas, Osmunda cinnamomeum (Cinnamon Fern) makes a dramatic focal point in the landscape.

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Osmunda claytoniana (Interrupted Fern)

The fertile fronds are interrupted in the middle by brown fertile leaflets (spore-bearing pinnae) which typically fall off in mid summer, thus giving this distinctive fern its common name.

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Osmunda regalis (Royal Fern)

Noted for its unique form and texture, Osmunda regalis (Royal Fern or Flowering Fern) is a tall, robust, deciduous fern forming a large rosette of elegant, broadly divided, bright green fronds.

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Polystichum setiferum (Soft Field Fern)

Bringing attention to its unusual soft green foliage, Soft Field Fern almost asks to be touched!

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