The sterile fronds of ostrich fern are 2-8 ft. tall, once-pinnate, tapered at both base and apex, brown-stemmed, and slightly scaly. Fertile fronds are shorter, with edges of pinnae turned in to form a beaded plume persistent through winter. The rootstock is creeping, producing urn-like clusters of fronds.
Habit: Herb , Fern
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Size Class: 3-6 ft.
Bloom Color: Not Applicable
Bloom Notes: Not a flowering plant. Reproduces by spores.
USA: AK , CT , DC , IA , IL , IN , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , ND , NH , NJ , NY , OH , PA , RI , SD , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: NB , NL , NS , ON , PE
Native Distribution: Nf. to s. AK, s. to n. VA, MO, SD & s. B.C.
Native Habitat: Swamps; bottomland woods & thickets
Light Requirement: Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil pH: Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Soil Description: Cool, wet, sandy soils.
Conditions Comments: Ostrich fern can become aggressive and should not be used in small spaces.
Description: Not Available
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available