Fern Plants Are Great In Landscaping
Ferns are ancient plants; they have been around for over 300 million years, although the modern species appeared 145 million years ago. They have many of the characteristics of flowering plants, but ferns produce spores in order to reproduce rather than seeds, and they do not have flowers. Ferns are not grown commercially, but do make good houseplants and are great for mixing into borders or growing in damper areas where other plants may struggle
Ferns, like the Hay Scented Fern are not restricted to the classic image of a damp shady growing area; they can be found in deserts, on the top of mountains and can be considerable pests in some areas such as fern bracken in Scottish heath land and mosquito ferns in tropical lakes. Some have very specific requirements to grow, such as the climbing fern which will only grow on very acidic soil.
There are many type of fern that you could choose to grow in your garden, Christmas ferns are evergreen and so offer year round color as well as a home for butterfly larvae, and their fronds are often brought into the house at Christmas time. Maidenhair ferns are great in the garden, but will be deciduous in cooler climates; they grow fairly slowly and prefer partial shade and a good amount of moisture. Maidenhair ferns are used in herbal medicines to treat all kinds of ailments, from kidney stones to asthma and sore throats; it is taken as a tea. Japanese painted ferns are one of the prettier species, with silver and reddish purple foliage that develops best with a little bit of early morning or late evening sunlight although the plant grows best in well drained but moist soil and partial shade.
Fern Plants are fairly easy to cultivate, and they will survive in conditions that are not their usual habitat, but will be unable to reproduce. They make good structural features in gardens as the leaves are unlike any other type of plant, and they can tolerate shady corners that other plants will not survive in. Ferns do not cope well with wind, so plant them in a sheltered area, or with other plants that can protect them, and if there is a frost ferns are unlikely to survive so don’t plant them outdoors if you get regular winter frosts. Carefully chosen ferns will complement flowering plants in your garden, and many are very attractive in their own right, so when you are designing your garden consider throwing a few ferns in there.