Matteuccia struthiopteris - Ostrich Fern

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Common Name:
Ostrich Fern
Plant Type:
Perennial, Ground Cover
Shade to Part Sun
Hardiness Zone:
Bloom Color:
Bloom Time:
Garden Height:
36-60 Inches
Garden Spread:
36-60 Inches
  • Our largest growing fern--great companion for large shade plants
  • Grows very well in damp sites--nice at the edge of a pond or stream
  • Spreads via underground rhizomes to form a colony

An Ostrich Fern is sure to make a statement with its huge stature. This rapidly spreading deciduous fern needs room to roam. The fronds turn greenish-bronze in the fall and brown in the winter. This is the fern with the edible fiddleheads, only if fully cooked. Native to the eastern U.S.

Uses: Beds, Borders, Woodland Gardens
Critter Resistance: Deer, Rabbit
Notable Features: Native
Growth Habit: Mounding

Homeowner Growing Tips: Best grown in partial shade, in moist, well-drained, neutral to slightly acidic soil. Amend with compost before planting. Avoid windy sites. Water regularly the first year to establish. Apply general purpose fertilizer periodically throughout the growing season. Does better in cool climates than in the heat and humidity of the deep South.

Photos courtesy of Walters Gardens, Inc

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