Perennial ferns are the perfect addition to any shade garden. They come in various shapes with interesting foliage looks and colors which pair well with other shade-loving perennials such as hosta, heuchera (coral bells), astilbe, and many others. They are one of the few shade perennials that are deer-resistant, making them a must-have for any woodland garden projects. They are also easy to maintain and will spread rapidly through your beds once they get established, giving you a lot of coverage with very little investment.
Here is a sampling of some of the varieties of perennial ferns we carry at Meadows Farms. Some varieties may not be available at all stores, so please contact your local Meadows Farms retail location for availability.
Lovely deep green fronds; fiddleheads and fronds emerge copper colored; great woodland and shade garden plant; keep evenly moist.
Christmas Fern’s ferny compound leaves remain forest green in color throughout the year. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.
An elegant fern with giant fronds that maintain a medium green throughout the season turning a beautiful apricot color in the fall; seed stalks are actually shorter than the plant.
This tall fern is a great vertical accent; has graceful, arching fronds; keep evenly moist, provides habitat and shelter for birds and bees.
Ghost Fern’s attractive ferny bipinnately compound leaves emerge silver in spring, turning light green in color with hints of silver throughout the season. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant. The deep purple stems are very colorful and add to the overall interest of the plant.
The lovely, leathery, glossy fronds of this bold fern resemble those of a holly; keep moist but soil should be well-drained; cut back fronds as they get damaged; tolerates some sun; dies back to ground in colder climates.
Japanese Painted Fern’s attractive ferny bipinnately compound leaves emerge deep purple in spring, turning silver in color with showy burgundy variegation throughout the season. The deep purple stems are very colorful and add to the overall interest of the plant.
A stunning fern for the shade garden with bright green new fronds that turn darker when mature; after they unwind, the tips hang down, like a tassel, but eventually straighten out; cut fronds are great for flower arrangements.
Lady Fern’s ferny bipinnately compound leaves remain green in color throughout the season. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.
Attractive dark green fronds with deep maroon-red central stems; clump-forming and dense, perfect for shady spots; beautiful in masses on the edges of ponds or streams.
The most common and recognizable of the ferns, this is a very tough and hardy plant, featuring tall lacy fronds all season long; spreads aggressively and may require some control; grows best in shade with rich, moist soil; great for textural effect.
Attractive tri-color fronds of silver, red and pale green; colorful maroon-red central stems and veins; compact and dense, perfect for shady spots; beautiful in masses on the edges of ponds or streams.