I love ferns. I have many in my garden. Some are clump forming. Some spread quite aggressively and others will form a crown. Here are some of my favorites.
Japanese Silver or Painted Fern (Athyrium niponicum var. pictum) – Beautiful silver and burgundy fronds. Gus is sniffing up something in there!
Autumn Fern (Dryopteris erythrosoa) – Named so because the new fronds in Spring, shown here, are a bronze color like Fall foliage.
Dixie Wood Fern (Dryopteris X Australis) – a very tall fern that is a natural hybrid.
Lady Fern (Athyrium filix-femina) – Named after its very lacy fronds. Behind it to the right is a Christmas Fern. Behind it to the left is a small Japanese Painted Fern.
Holly Fern (Cyrtomium falcatum) – I purchased this about 5 years ago in a 5 inch pot and now it is about 2.5 feet tall and three feet wide.
Korean Rock Fern (Polystichum tsus-simense) – This fern has a nice netted pattern on the fronds but not much of a grower. Behind it is a small Lady in Red Fern which is a Lady Fern with a red stem.
Sensitive Fern (Onoclea sensibilis) – named so because the leaves are killed by the first frost. It also has an unusual fertile frond that sticks straight up like a flag pole and is brown. You can see in the background of this picture.
Here in The South it is important to make sure ferns receive enough moisture to survive the heat. Otherwise, they do not thrive and slowly wither away.
Some may spread aggressive when the conditions are right. Sensitive Fern, Hay-scented Fern, and Bracken Fern can all be aggressive when conditions are perfect! Be careful where you plant them!