How to Grow Fern Plants
Picture courtesy of Den Linnehan
It's at home in the shade. It thrives a lush, green in areas receiving little
or no direct sunlight. It makes it's home where no sun loving plant or bush
can survive. That makes Ferns a pretty neat plant, huh!?!
Out in the forest, there's a wide range of ferns, growing unattended. Unattended
you say? Why, that must mean they require little or no attention. Why that's
my kind of plant for my backyard.
Home gardeners value ferns because they are easy to grow, and there's an
abundance of varieties. They make an attractive plant in the shady or wooded
sections of the backyard. Try them as edging along a stand of trees. They
are very attractive mixed among a group of rocks, too.
Ferns are non-flowering plants grown around the world. Scientists believe
ferns are among the oldest of plants, dating back 350 million years. Over
those 350 millions years, ferns have spread their rhizome roots across the
globe. About the only place they are not found is desert regions, and the
north and south poles.
Around the world, there are over thousands of species, although there are
only about 300-400 varieties in the U.S. Some ferns grow as small as an inch,
and are perfect for terrariums, or as indoor houseplants. Others grow as
big as a tree, up to 50-60 feet! Most ferns have long lives, and propagate
by producing spores.
Did you know? Some ferns are on the Endangered Species list. If you
are going out into the woods in search of ferns to transplant, make sure
you know how to identify them.
Important Note: Some ferns are poisonous. Unless you know the variety
you have is safe, keep children a pets away from ferns.
How to Grow Fern Plants:
Ferns are slow to grow, but have long lives. Most people buy ferns from garden
supply stores or on the Internet.
Select a location with partial to full shade. Ferns like soil that is rich
in organic matter. If your soil is poor, add lots of compost and organic
matter. They require the soil to be moist at all times. After planting your
fern, water well.
Your plant should thrive for years with little attention. If your soil is
poor, apply organic compost and mulch from time to time. In dry periods,
make sure to keep the soil moist.
Most people will let the plants grow naturally. You can prune dead or damaged
leaves(also called fronds).
Ferns produce spores (like mushrooms). Spores develop on the underside
of the leaves. Millions of spores are produced. But, only a few land in a
place suitable to grow. Ferns also grow by spreading their underground
Insect and Disease:
Insects and disease are not too common. But, if problems arise, treat early
with insecticides or fungicides as appropriate.