Thursday, January 20, 2011

Sensitive Fern


Onoclea sensibilis ( Sensitive Fern )
A fast growing to invasive but very beautiful, rhizome spreading Fern reaching up to 4.5 x 6++ feet, that is right at home on moist boggy soils. It is a native to wet woods, swamps and riverbanks in northern Asia and eastern North America ( from Saskatchewan to Lansdowne House, Ontario to the southern tip of James Bay to Labrador and Newfoundland; south to northeast Colorado to eastern Texas to far northern Florida. It was abundant both at Detroit, Michigan and on the Ohio shore before 1900. It is an excellent groundcover on wet sites near the water. It even grows in the bottoms of drainage ditches that flood after heavy rains. This plant has existed on earth for more than 60 million years including when the dinosaurs roamed the earth.
The bright green triangular, deciduous fronds, up to 14 x 12 inches in size, have large, toothed pinnae. The fronds quickly turn brown in autumn after the first fall frost.
Hardy zones 2 to 8 in sun or shade as long as the soil is kept moist. It can even be planted in marshes. It prefers fertile, aciidic soils.

* photo taken on May 8 2010 @ McCrillis Gardens, Bethesda, MD

* photo taken on July 13 2011 in Howard Co., MD

* photos taken on May 19 2013 in Columbia, MD
* photos taken on June 12 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 7 2014 @ London Town Gardens, Edgewater, MD

* photo taken on July 24 2014 in Columbia, MD

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