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Audubon® Royal Fern
This plant is not available at this time through Bower & Branch. Bower & Branch provides this information for reference only. Please click here to be placed on a waiting list. See below for other selections.
Native plants rule! Native Royal Fern will be the queen of your shady garden. Her Highness begins her reign in spring with much pageantry. The tightly curled croziers spring like magic from the bare earth and unfurl. In no time, a lush, leafy Spirit will appear in your garden, standing up to six feet tall. In summer, you’ll admire the plumelike, cinnamon-colored fertile fronds that rise from the foliage, giving this plant another name: Flowering Fern. A distinguished feature for moist to wet soil, Royal Fern will turn a swampy site into a regal pleasure-garden. Provides cover for frog-princes and other small animals, too.
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: 3-9
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Royal Fern is a tough, dependable Spirit that can live for 100 years. In geological terms, Royal Fern is long-lived, too—members of its family, the Osmunda family, have been found in fossils that date back to 230 million years ago! Long before dinosaurs roamed the Earth, Royal Fern’s close relatives were already thriving. This species has since established itself all over the planet. In the U.S., Royal Fern is found throughout the eastern states; it is also native to Canada, South America, Europe, North Africa, and Asia. A cosmopolitan plant that needs only damp soil and a little shade to be happy.
Royal Fern’s distinguished performance continues in autumn. When the temperatures start to drop, its bright green leaves take on golden, salmon-orange, and caramel hues. A wonderful fall finale!
How to Grow
Moisture is key to growing a healthy Royal Fern specimen. It doesn’t like to dry out and will even grow in mucky soil if you have a troublesome area in your landscape that doesn’t drain well. Shade is also a necessity, especially during the hottest part of the day. It will tolerate more sun in cool-summer regions as long as adequate moisture is supplied. Unlike some other Ferns, Royal Fern does not have running tendencies, but forms a clump. Give it plenty of room, however, because it can get big. Royal Fern goes dormant in the winter. Cut the spent fronds back in early spring, just before the new growth emerges.
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