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Learning to grow ferns indoors and outdoors is a fantastic way to enjoy having a green thumb at any time of the year. This article will teach you all need to know about growing the Christmas Fern, the New York Fern, and the Maidenhair Fern.
The Christmas ferns, (Polystichum Acrostichoides) are a fern that grows in zones 3 through 9. This specific fern earns its name because some parts stay green all year round with dark green fronds (leaves) that reach an impressive three feet tall and up to 4 inches wide. Meaning, this beautiful plant brings color and life to the garden or lawn, while others lie dormant in the winter.
Growing outdoor Christmas Ferns demand very little time. They do best in an area with little shade or a completely shaded area, but they can also manage just fine getting a little bit of sun. This makes the placement of the fern so much easier than other traditional plants. Like many other outdoor types, these ferns thrive in moist, well-drained soil that is high in organic matter.
Note: Make sure to plant Christmas fern in the early spring after frosty weather is no longer a threat.
Place the plants 18 inches apart and deep enough that the roots won't overcrowd. After planting, make sure to add a 4-inch layer of bark, mulch, or pine needles to help the plants retain moisture and protect them from the elements.
Outdoor Christmas Fern Care
It is pretty easy to take care of the Christmas ferns. They should be watered once a week, or check them often to ensure the soil is consistently moist but be careful not to overwater them*. A light application of acidic granular fertilizer is applied around the base of the fern the second spring after the initial planting, then every year after.
*The first sign that any fern is overwatered is usually wilted or yellowing of the leaves
The New York ferns (Thelypteris Noveboracensis) are a wild-growing perennial native and found all through the Eastern United States. This plant's home is primarily in the forest and is seen along the banks of streams and rivers. As stated before, ferns love the water. Placing ferns where other plants in your garden won't thrive due to moisture is something to think about.
The New York fern has fronds that are a yellowish-green color and grow up to two feet tall. Twice divided, the leaflets give the New York fern a light and airy appearance and support toads as well as helps fill in gaps of woodland gardens where plants won't grow.
The New York Ferns Care
The care of the New York Ferns is about the same as the Christmas ferns, except that it thrives better outdoors. Once the placement is established in a naturally and exceptionally moist area, the New York Ferns will thrive. You can divide the roots to thin them out or spread the plants out further throughout the garden.
The Maidenhair Ferns
Maidenhair ferns (Adiantum spp)make beautiful additions to gardens with many shades and bright, indirect places near the home. Their color is a light gray-green, with feather-like foliage.
Growing Maidenhair Ferns
Growing Maidenhair Ferns, much like the other two, are pretty simple to grow. The North American native plant makes an outstanding addition to a group of plants or on its own. As long as the ground stays moist, make sure it stays well-drained and will thrive.
Names of other species of this plant are
Native Ferns Can Make Easy Borders
Are you considering trying slightly different plants for your garden from the previous years but are unsure what to plant? The best ideas are sometimes the ones that are right in front of us; using plants native to where we live.
Ferns make excellent border plants, and most of them do well in a broad range of soils. Although some people may think ferns take a lot of care, you may not have to put much work into them if you choose a fern native to where you live. Whether you live in a dry or moist climate, a fern will suit your location.
If you live in an area in the Southern United States, you will want to look for a fern that will be able to withstand the relentless sun and dry conditions. For those living in these climates, it is recommended to invest in either the Christmas fern or the Hay Scented Fern. Both can tolerate many different types of soils and are easy to grow. However, Hay Scented Ferns will need to be watered more regularly if exposed to sunlight. Ensure that they are placed in areas where they will get a break from sunlight for at least part of the day.
For people who reside in the Midwest or Eastern region of the United States, investing in moisture-loving ferns in need of full shade is going to be the best option for your fern border. Japanese Painted Ferns and New York ferns are two excellent options for these types of climates. They both have beautiful colors that will stand out in the shade, and both will thrive in high moisture and fully shaded areas. One thing to note is that they will need to be protected from winds, so using them as a border for a fenced area or along your house will be the best option for planting.
No matter what unique climate you have or where you live, a kind of fern will make an excellent border for your garden. Ferns make easy borders because they do well in most types of soils, and their hearty fronds will add bulk and variety to your garden. Using ferns native to your region will ensure that they thrive after being planted.