Audubon® Maidenhair Hardy Fern
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A textural treat for shady spots! Northern Maidenhair Fern lends a delicate look to the sun-challenged parts of your landscape. Also known as Five-Fingered Fern, it sports bright green, fingerlike fronds that radiate out from a black, horseshoe-shaped stem (or “stipe”). In the woodsy soil that it loves, Northern Maidenhair Fern forms handsome colonies of frilly foliage arranged in mesmerizing circular patterns. Use this noble native plant in your shady borders, foundation plantings, or wildlife habitat garden as a groundcover. A wonderful, eco-friendly alternative to the typical non-native groundcovers that often become invasive.
May Benefit & Attract: wrens, sparrows, mockingbirds & thrashers, vireos
Take Birds Under Your Wing
New! Introducing our bird-friendly collection of Audubon® Native Plants & Trees
- Better for Birds, 100% Neonic-Free
- Not Available in non-native regions, states or counties (see Native Regions map)
Bower & Branch is proud to grow Audubon® Native Plants for Birds in partnership with the National Audubon Society to help birds and other wildlife thrive.
- The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow
- This bird-friendly native plant provides food and shelter for local and migrating birds and other wildlife
- Your purchase and planting of this native flora directly supports Audubon’s conservation mission and impact
- Learn how you can help birds in your home and community through Audubon’s Plants for Birds program
- Audubon Native Plants & Trees are free of neonicotinoids and exclusively grown by Bower & Branch
Audubon® is a licensed and registered trademark of the National Audubon Society. All rights reserved.
- Hardiness Zone: 3-8
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Ferns give a Jurassic Park feel to the landscape. These ancient Spirits, which existed with and even long before the dinosaurs, speak to us on a primitive level. They bring to mind an era we can only imagine, with lush ferny plants covering the ground as well as taking the form of tall trees. In modern gardens, their cool green fronds make shady spaces seem calming and peaceful. Northern Maidenhair Fern is a North American native found over most of the eastern United States. Its range stretches from Minnesota to Maine in the North and Oklahoma to Georgia in the South.
Got deer? Ferns are usually a safe bet where deer are a problem. They provide needed greenery in the shady woodland garden spaces where deer may come looking for a meal, but deer tend to leave them alone. Northern Maidenhair Fern is troubled by few pests of any kind and is relatively carefree.
How to Grow
Although Northern Maidenhair Fern is one tough Spirit, treating it well will reap rewards. This means giving it a premium spot in the landscape where it will receive dappled sunlight or shade throughout the day. This Fern also appreciates rich, organic soil that holds some moisture but drains well and doesn’t stay soggy after a rain. Regular irrigation is important for lush growth, especially if plants are competing with tree roots for water. Northern Maidenhair goes dormant in the winter. Cut the spent fronds back in early spring, just before the new growth emerges.
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