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How to Grow Outdoor Ferns in Your Garden

If you choose to place them inside a hanging basket or plant them as a groundcover they add a tropical feel to any garden that is shaded at home. If you’ve got an environment that is moist and shaded Ferns are an excellent method of enhancing your garden by adding different shades of green.

There are many species of fern plants that thrive in the garden with little effort.

  1. The Christmas fern: Polystichum Acrostichoides is an ornamental evergreen fern that has thick dark green fronds that measure between two and three feet in length. The fronds of this fern resemble needled branches of pine trees that’s why it got its name. Christmas fern can grow in a range of conditions, but the full shade or partial shade is the best.
  2. Boston fern Also called sword fern: Nephrolepis exaltata is a perennial evergreen herbaceous plant. The branching arching of this fern is what is ideal for putting in a basket for hanging. Though they are typically grown in a greenhouse, Boston ferns flourish outdoors under the right conditions. Boston ferns need the right climate, with either shade of shade, either full or partial because their fern fronds can be burned by direct sun. Boston fern cultivars that are ideal for growing outdoors comprise Tiger Fern and Lemon Buttons.
  3. Lady’s fern: One of the ferns that require less maintenance because of their ability to withstand sunlight. Athyrium filix-Femina is a lush, bright green leaf with fronds in a variety of shades of red, purple, and green. The fern is perennial and grows from between two and five feet tall, based on the variety, while it likes soil that is moist, it will become more drought-resistant as it matures. The rhizomes that it forms and the fronds that grow out of can be poisonous if they are eaten they are in their raw form, so don’t plant lady ferns if you have pets that are outdoors. Some cultivars suitable for growing outdoors are those that are Japanese painted Fern Plants, Lady in Red, Silver Falls Japanese painted fern, and Ostrich the fern.
  4. Maidenhair ferns: With deep dark stripes, and bright, delicate fronds, maidenhair plants require a humid climate as well as humid soil with a high percentage of organic matter. They are extremely sensitive to direct light and are best planted in areas with full shade. Maidenhair ferns that work to be grown outdoors include American maidenhair Northern maidenhair as well as the Southern maidenhair.
  5. Osmunda Fern: One of the tallest ferns that are available to gardeners at home Osmunda ferns thrive within moist and shady swampy regions like the Ozark region of Missouri. The types of Osmunda ferns suitable for outdoor cultivation comprise the cinnamon fern and the interrupted fern.
  6. A New York Fern is one of the most adaptable types of fern because of its ability to withstand a variety of lighting conditions Medium-sized hardy fern also has a drought tolerance when mature, making it an excellent option for beginners who want to start growing ferns. Wood ferns suitable for growing outdoors include the fall the fern as well as the high-crested buckler-fern the leatherleaf fern and marginal wood fern.

How to Plant Outdoor Ferns

The majority of varieties of ferns have the same requirements for planting however there are some species that are only suited to particular climates or in light conditions. Follow these guidelines as a guideline however, make sure to study the planting requirements and appropriate USDA zones of hardiness for the particular species of fern.

  1. Select a time for planting according to your climate zone. The most common moment to start a fern is the springtime, right after the last frost, however, you can plant them during summer with no difficulty. In climates with temperate temperatures, you can plant ferns throughout the year.
  2. Pick a shaded spot. Most ferns thrive in complete shade. If the species you are looking for fern is tolerant of some sun, ensure that you provide it with extra water to counteract the temperature.
  3. The ferns are best suited to humid, slightly acidic soil. In their natural habitat, the majority of ferns live in moist forests or on the banks of a water source and therefore require soil that is very moist. Even ferns that develop into drought-tolerant as they age typically require moist soil prior to the time of plantation.

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