The Q&A Archives: Australian Tree Ferns Winterization

Question: How do I overwinter an Austrialian tree fern (grown in a lg pot)?Do I cut back the fronds now or in spring? The trunk is approximately 6" in diametor. Should I put it in a potting shed or can it be left on a south facing covered porch? We are zone 7, in Eugene, Oregon.

Answer: Cyathea cooperi, the Australian Tree Fern, is hardy to 20F but can experience frond damage during prolonged cold spells. Since your plant is in a pot, keep it in a sheltered place, such as your covered porch. (A shed will be much too dark.) To further insure its ability to weather the winter cold, protect the roots from freezing by wrapping some insulating material around the outside of the pot. Wait until spring to assess any damage, removing any dead fronds at that time.

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