ferns - Knowledgebase Question

Woodcliff Lake, NJ
Question by tomandja
May 3, 2007
hi. i live in northern NJ & have a VERY shady yard. i would like to fill in some areas with ferns that can stand harsh winter climates and come back year after year. also, the water in our yard does not perc very well so the areas are sometimes damp for days at at time. will ferns do ok and where can i find ferns to use as ground cover...i have enought hostas, rhodes, etc..thanks..


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Answer from NGA
May 3, 2007

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There are many different ferns you could use in a shady area, this sounds like a perfect planting site for ferns. Where they are happy, ferns will spread naturally so you may want to experiment a little at first to see which ones do the best in different spots and then add more of those. Most ferns prefer evenly moist but not flooded soil. In a wetter area you might use the cinnamon fern and royal fern (both types of Osmunda) which are both vigorous spreaders where soil moisture is abundant. Here are more suggestions from the National Arboretum. You may need to cut and paste the complete url into your browser to make it work correctly.

http://www.usna.usda.gov/Garde...

Enjoy your new fern garden!

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