Ferns

fern_tunnel


















       
(Fern and shade plant tunnel)

Our availability and range is always pretty good but does vary somewhat from month to month but these are a few that we periodically stock.

Arachnoides
 

Arachniodes standishii
A rare and elegant fern with finely divided fronds. Commonly called the upside down fern due to the pinnules looking like the underside of a frond. It prefers slightly moist, humous rich soil and light shade, a mulch will help achieve the preferred soil conditions. Its delicate looking, arching fronds make a dramatic contrast when grown with other ferns. Reaches a height of approx 50cm, slowly spreading to form a nice clump. A superb and very hardy fern.

Arachnoides simplicor 'variegata'
The 'Eastern Holly Fern' is a seldom seen extremely attractive fern with dark green, tough, waxy-textured fronds arranged into airy slender fingers with pale central stipes running along the length of each leaflet. Requires a moist, humous rich well drained soil in full or partial shade. Generally evergreen but may lose foliage in cold winters. Pretty tough if excessive winter wet can be avoided but late to get going in spring. Height and spread of approx 50cm.

Asplenium
 
Asplenium x lucrosum (AGM-H1-2)
A superb cross between A.bulbiferum and A.dimorphum. Sometimes known as the 'Hen and chicken' fern, although this name should really apply to one of its parents, A.bulbiferum. This beautiful fern constantly produces new fronds which have a wonderful arching habit, sometimes weighed down with abundant 'plantlets' (chickens) which form on the fertile fronds. One for a warm, semi shady spot. Not hardy. May reach upto 0.7m high and wide.
 
Asplenium scolopendrium
Asplenium scolopendrium 'Angusifolia' (AGM-H6)
Asplenium scolopendrium Cristatum Group
Asplenium scolopendrium 'Furcatum'

Asplenium trichomanes (AGM-H6)

Athyrium
 
Athyrium filix-femina subsp. angustum f. rubellum 'Lady in Red'
Athyrium 'Ghost'  
Athyrium niponicum var. pictum (AGM-H5) 
Athyrium niponicum var. pictum 'Red Beauty' 
Athyrium niponicum var. pictum 'Silver Falls'  
Athyrium niponicum var. pictum 'Ursula's Red' 
Athyrium otophorum var. okanum
Athyrium vidalii


Blechnum
 
Blechnum brasiliense (AGM-H1a) - May not be available in 2019.
A tender yet most handsome fern with striking red new foliage which gradually changes to a glossy green as the frond matures. Will form a short trunk given several years. Will not tolerate any frost, coming from the warm and humid subtropical forests of South America, therefore makes a great greenhouse specimen if kept above freezing and on the dry side over winter. Suited to a outdoor spot in dappled shade during summer with plenty of water.
 
Blechnum novae-zelandiae - May not be available 2019
Although common in its native N.Zealand this impressive evergreen Blechnum is fairly scarce in the UK. The long, handsome fronds may reach upto 1.5m in length and show a lovely red colouring when emerging from the crown. Does best in a humus rich, moist soil in shade, although tolerates some sun if given adequate moisture. Although fairly tough it is best to give it a sheltered spot. In ideal conditions it can make an impressive clump upto 1m wide.
 
Blechnum penna-marina
Blechnum penna-marina subsp. Alpinum 
Blechnum spicant (AGM-H6)

Cyathea
 
Cyathea australis 
'Rough Tree Fern' an architectural, trunk forming fern with larger specimens producing 2m long arching fronds from a central crown. Much quicker to form a trunk than other tree ferns. Suited to a warm spot in dappled shade. Although tolerant of several degrees of frost it is far better in a pot and given frost free protection over winter. During summer water the stem as well as the soil, but avoid watering the crown in winter. Can reach 4m after many years.
 

Cyathea cooperi 'Brentwood'  
A superb Australian tree fern capable of producing stunning fronds over 2m in length. This particular cultivar is quicker growing, generally larger with darker fronds. As with most tree ferns it is best grown in a pot and stored in a greenhouse over winter and will keep old fronds if frost protected. Suited to a shady spot out of the wind during summer and given ample moisture and a monthly feed. Can reach several metres in height but generally less in a pot.

Cyrtomium


Cyrtomium falcatum (AGM-H3)
Cyrtomium fortunei var. clivicola
 
Dicksonia

 
Dicksonia antarctica (AGM-H3)
A beautiful and ancient tree fern. The magnificent fronds, produced annually, are lush green and on mature plants can be metres in length. The trunk itself is slow to gain height, just a few centimetres per year. It requires cool, moist, shady conditions and an adequate supply of water into the head of the crown.
Will tolerate a sunnier aspect given shelter and reliable moisture. Tough but not totally hardy as many suffered over the winter of 2010/11. Protect young plants in winter with straw or pot grow and keep under cover.
We have a limited supply of 1 and 2 ft trunks for the start of 2019 before new stock arrives later in the season. 

Growing Dicksonia in the Garden - Winter Protection.

 
This is what we do;

3ft trunks and below;
1. Form a chicken wire tube 1ft longer than the trunk and 2 to 3 times wider than the trunk. The tube can easily be formed by fixing the edges of the wire together with cable ties.

2. Place tube over trunk and fill from ground level to the top with large leaf litter or straw. This will ensure a foot of cover over the head of the trunk. Firm down straw lightly but do not pack tight.
3. In mild weather expose the head of the trunk by pulling back the straw so as to provide good air circulation.
4. When frosts are forecast re-cover the head of the trunk with straw.
5. In very cold and wet weather such as 'Beast from the East' conditions I will put a trug or similar over the top.
6. Remove protection during spring when temperatures allow. It may be advisable to keep a handfull of straw to place in the crown if late frosts are forcast.

4ft trunks and above;
As above but instead of the chicken wire tube sitting at ground level bend in the bottom and staple to the trunk at an appropriate height. 


Growing Dicksonia under cover - Winter Protection

If growing and protecting your tree fern undercover with frost free protection it is important to occasional water the crown of the plant over winter. They are evergreen and therefore require some water to 'tick over' and to keep the crown healthy.   

 
Dicksonia antarctica
















           

A new frond of Dicksonia antarctica ready to unfurl.

Doodia

Doodia media

Dryopteris
Dryopteris affinis 'Cristata' (AGM-H5)
Dryopteris affinis 'Pinderi'
Dryopteris affinis 'Polydactyla Dadds'
Dryopteris x australis
Dryopteris championii 
Dryopteris crassirhizoma (AGM-H6)
Dryopteris dilatata 'Crispa Whiteside' (AGM-H6)
Dryopteris dilatata 'Lepidota Crispa Cristata'
Dryopteris erythrosora (AGM-H5)
Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' (AGM-H5)

Dryopteris erythrosora var. prolifica
Dryopteris filix-mas 'Barnesii' 
Dryopteris filix-mas 'Furcans' 
Dryopteris filix-mas 'Linearis Polydactyla' (AGM-H7)
Dryopteris lepidopoda 
Dryopteris ludoviciana
Dryopteris sieboldii
Dryopteris wallichiana (AGM-H5)

Matteuccia

Matteuccia orientalis (AGM-H5) 
Matteuccia struthiopteris (AGM-H5)
Matteuccia struthiopteris 'The King


Onoclea
 
Onoclea sensibilis (AGM-H4)
An impressive fern producing arching, finely divided, fresh green triangular fronds which can show pinkish bronze colouring when emerging in spring. Also known as the 'sensitive fern' on account of the fronds turning yellow and dying down after the first real frost of the season. Must have plenty of moisture in full to dappled shade. Dislikes strong sun. Can reach a height of 90cm, gradually creeping outwards to form a large but controlable clump. Hardy.

Polypodium
 
Polypodium 'Whitley Giant'
A seldom seen evergreen fern with handsome, broad, green fronds with a curving habit. Can be grown in shade or part shade but once established can cope with a sunnier position
generally prefering a drier spot than most other ferns. Reaches an approxiamate height of 40cm slowing forming a clump with a similar width. A useful fern that copes with a drier more open position if given help to establish. Very hardy, robust and easy to grow.

Polystichum
 
Polystichum aculeatum (AGM-H7) 
Polystichum munitum (AGM-H7) 
Polystichum neolobatum
Polystichum polyblepharum (AGM-H7) 
Polystichum rigens 
Polystichum setiferum (AGM-H7)
Polystichum setiferum 'Congestum'
Polystichum setiferum
 'Plumosomultilobum Densum' 
Polystichum setiferum 'Pulcherrimum Bevis' 
Polystichum tsussimense (AGM-H4)
Polystichum xiphophyllum 

Pteris
Pteris multifida (or is it Cretica????)
'Spider Brake Fern', a stunning and exceptionally rare evergreen fern which sometimes I can convince myself is cretica 'The Cretian Brake Fern', again extremely rare and handsome. Forms a clump of fresh green, narrow, pinnate fronds, with pairs of simple pinnae extending from the rachis. Typical Pteris with larger, thinner, fertile fronds. Found as a spore seedling (somehow?) in an old greenhouse where it withstood -15C. Likes a warm, shady spot in a moist, fertile soil. I have labelled this as multifida as the fertile fronds have the definite, heavily, nearly entire winged rachis and it has withstood below -10C under cover without any damge at all but.... the sterile fronds appear very much that of cretica with only the teminal pinnae showing a slightly winged appearence. The overall look, size and prefered growing conditions are that of cretica liking a more fertile, damp but drained spot with fertile fronds easily in excess of 60cm in length. 

Sphenomeris
 
Sphenomeris chinensis BSWJ6108 
An exceptionally rare and beautiful fern producing upright, slender stems with a delicate, finely dissected appearence. Raised from a collection gathered on the island of Yakushima, Japan in 1998. Suited to an organic, moist soil which will allow the rhizome to slowly creep in full to part shade. Had no problem with -14C planted under cover but not tested outdoors as yet. Very suitable for a pot and given winter protection in a cold glasshouse. Stunning!

Woodwardia
 
Woodwardia orientalis - Not available for 2019.  
The 'Oriental Chain Fern' forms a magnificent, large robust plant with wide, tough, textured fronds of a rich green. The fronds may reach upto 0.75m in length and by the end of summer are covered in many baby ferns. Requires a sheltered, moist spot in shade. Has survived -10C in an unheated tunnel during the winter of 2010/11, although all top growth was lost. Trialling outside for 2011/12. Save some babies, frost free, just in case.
 
Woodwardia radicans (AGM-H3)
Very rare fern commonly known as the 'European Chain Fern' forming arching mounds of magnificent dark green fronds reaching over 1m in length. Needs a sheltered, shady, moist spot in any decent soil. Can be tricky over winter but has been ok in the nursery garden in a very protected spot under an overhanging roof. Looks good in a pot and given winter shelter. Needs space but looks great with smaller plants grown in and around it.
 
Woodwardia unigemmata - May not be available for 2019
This rare 'Chain Fern' forms a magnificent, large robust plant with wide, tough fronds which emerge a wonderful shade of red before turning green. The fronds may reach 1m in length and occasionally produce fernlets at the mature frond tips. Requires a sheltered, moist spot in shade. Stayed evergreen and survived -10C in an unheated tunnel during 2010/11. May be OK outside in a sheltered position with winter crown protection or pot grow and keep safe.
 
 
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