Ferns may look delicate but they can be pretty hardy.  Many ferns, including evergreen types, are  tough plants, and most are highly adaptable, they thrive in average soil and in shady conditions. These primitive plants have been around for a good 350 million years and don’t really need our attention at all, thank you very much! Just ensure to select the right fern for the right spot, the way mother nature organizes her garden.
We can assure you there is a fern suited to every garden and situation: perennial bed, foundation plant­ing, groundcover, focal point, rock garden, edging, pondside feature, container and more.

Although they’ll grow anywhere under almost any circumstances, there are steps you can take to maximize your fern’s success:

  • Site in part shade in a sheltered space
  • Ensure loosely packed soil around the roots they like moisture and air!
  • Provide plenty of humus (natural, shredded leaf litter is ideal), but do not overfertilize.

Here are a few ferns you might consider adding to your garden


1. American maidenhair fern Native to northeastern North America. Deciduous; airy, rounded leaflets arranged in finger-like pattern on wiry black stems. Forms dense colonies. Despite fragile look, tough as nails in moist, acidic soil in part shade.
Height 30 to 60 cm Hardy to
Zone 2

2.Golden male fern Semi-evergreen; tall and robust, with many crested forms. Very adaptable; tolerate part sun; tolerate drought in medium shade. is one of the most handsome and reliable varieties. 
Height 60 to 120 cm hardy to Zone 4

 

3. Hart’s tongue fern Evergreen; undivided fronds; many varieties with wavy to ruffled edges. Needs neutral to alkaline soil that’s moist but well drained; don’t overwater. Tolerates part sun.
Height 20 to 40 cm
hardy to Zone 4

4.Lady fern Deciduous; hundreds of varieties, most have very finely dissected fronds. Prefers humus-rich loam in light to medium shade, but very adaptable. 
Height 50 to 100 cm
hardy to Zone 3

5. Royal fern 
Native to eastern North America. Deciduous; majestic, erect fronds with coppery red stems oliage turns golden in fall. Tolerates full sun in boggy soil; part shade in average (not too dry) soil. 
Height to 1.5 m
 hardy to Zone 2

6. Autumn fern Evergreen; new spring growth is coppery orange. Very adaptable and resilient; needs good drainage; drought-tolerant in shade.
Height 20 to 50 cm 
hardy to Zone 5

7. Japanese painted fern Deciduous; striking, metallic-silver fronds with red stems. Needs cool, sheltered site in moist but well-drained, acidic soil. ‘Branford Beauty’ is a newer, more vigorous form. 
Height 40 to 50 cm hardy to Zone 4

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