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Christmas Fern | Plant Profile

Christmas Fern (Polystichum acrostichoides) are hardy, evergreen ferns that are native to both dry and moist woodlands in the American Midwest. These ferns are clump-forming and create somewhat of a fountain-like shape. Small medium green leaflets populate the fronds.

Christmas Fern prefers fertile, dry to medium moisture, well drained soils in part shade to full shade.

Christmas Fern are well adapted to shady areas and can tolerate either dry or damp soils, as long as the soils are well drained. They are ideal for massing on hillsides with shallow soils to help with erosion control. Their evergreen fronds bring winter interest to areas in need of color.


Christmas Fern Characteristics

Christmas Fern are attractive, hardy ferns that are well adapted to many growing conditions. Dry or moist soils are tolerable as long as there is no standing water. Christmas Fern are popular choices for low-growing erosion control as they are able to tolerate drought and shallow soils. Heavy Shade is not an issue for these hardy ferns. Planting at an angle to allow runoff helps to avoid root rot.

There are few serious disease or insect issues that threaten the health of Christmas Fern. Crown and root rot are possible in poorly drained soils.

USDA Climate Zone
Zones 3 - 9
1.00 - 2.00'
1.00 - 2.00'
Bloom Time
Dry - Medium
Part Shade - Full Shade
Deer Resistant?