The Japanese Painted Fern, Athyrium niponicum Pictum’. In our round garden it is an absolute treat, with soft silvery greyish-green foliage that has a hint of maroon finely etched through the fronds.
I have heard some gardeners refer to Ferns as something we may plant when we could think of nothing else for the position.
I just don’t feel that way about them. In fact I think that one of the best ways to add structure to a border can be with the use of Ferns. If in the past you have shunned them thinking they are boring take a look at this one.
The Japanese Painted Fern, Athyrium niponicum Pictum is a striking deciduous fern with soft greyish-green silvery foliage touched with a hint of maroon This unique Painted Fern grows to a height of about 18 inches and certainly earns its place in our round garden. Grows best of all in a semi shaded position where it is free draining, do take care it doesn’t dry out though.
Perfect as a specimen plant It will contrast well with Hostas or red leafed Heuchera. As I have already suggested, grow this one and you will see Ferns in a new light. Although it is perfectly hardy, my experience has been that in our garden it does not look at its best until late Summer.
I have to be honest, although we have had this plant for many years and it has never let us down, it is very slow in developing after it first emerges in Spring giving the impression that it would be happier with temperatures a little higher.
Hardiness – Fully hardy in our Aberdeen garden
Height – 50/60cmSoil –
Position – Full/partial shade
Soil – Neutral/acid
*** Japanese fern ***
I have seen a few garden bloggers suggest that they are not in favour of those who recommend plants. At first I thought of this as rather strange. However the feeling is that just because a certain plant may perform in your garden in this or that manner doesn’t mean that it will do the same in another’s. So to set the record straight, as far as I am concerned here is what I think. Myra and I have been gardening in Aberdeen for over forty years, we are not professional gardeners but do have a lot of experience. When I first started gardening, I would welcome all the advice I was given, but even then had enough common sense to realise that I may have different results on many occasions than that of my mentors. So, my blog generally revolves around plants which we have grown in the garden over all these years in the somewhat cool Summer conditions which we experience in the North East of Scotland. I intend continuing to do this for a long time yet, surely in the realisation that you will have some plants which I may recommend performing much better and some not so good as ours.
Another Fern which I am fond of is the Shuttlecock Fern Matteuccia Struthiopteris.
Best planted in semi shade
This one looks at its very best in our garden in late Spring/early Summer. It really does look amazing in dappled shade with the sun just catching the fronds.The Shuttlecock Fern is notorious for the seedlings which you can often find growing around the main plant, I just get rid of the ones which I don’t want, not much of a problem really. Growing conditions, much the same as for the Japanese Fern.
Hardiness – Fully hardy
Height – 1mtr
If you are looking for an evergreen Fern then the one which I like is the Harts Tongue Fern Asplenium Scolopendrum.
Although this one is evergreen, when I see the new fronds start to appear in Spring I remove the old ones which like myself have started to show their age. Harts Tongue enjoys a position in semi shade or full shade for that matter. You can see for yourself how it came by its name.
Hardiness – Fully hardy
Height – 60cm
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Here below we have a Fern which I at one time thought was a form of the stags horn. How unlikely is that in the cool temperatures of Aberdeen
It is indeed another form of the Harts Tongue with a name which is very easy to forget. (Asplenium Scolopendrium Cristatum Harts Tongue Fern) What a mouthful, well its a little taller and has crispy fronds, highly polished. and evergreen like the plainer one. I also like this one with perhaps a slight preference towards the plain
This other Deciduous Japanese Fern below, Dryopteris Erythrosora is the one which I like best of them all, it starts off in late Spring with fronds of an orange/brown shade, later turning a soft green then darkening. This one is fully hardy, growing to a height of 18 inches in our garden.
Position – Semi shade
This last Fern which I have to show is another which is in the round garden. I don’t have a name for it however it is quite tall with a height of three feet or perhaps a little taller. The fronds are very finely cut giving a delicate appearance which belies the hardiness of the plant. Well that’s me all done with Ferns for today other than to say the garden would not be the same without their presence.
Here we are at the end of October, there are still blooms in the garden if you search for them, however like most others in the Northern Hemisphere the garden at the moment is all about foliage. So in keeping with the plant profile of this week we will stick with foliage and a few longer shots of the garden in October.
well, this is not a shot of foliage or the garden but the view out front from our bedroom window.
First frosty morning October 17th
An Apple tree we planted in early Spring, told to remove the fruits in the first year, couldn’t resist leaving one to see how it developed.
The Rowan Joseph Rock in the woodland with Yellow berries at this time of year.
A West facing border which is all about foliage.
The Hydrangea Petiolaris showing its Autumn colours
Yesterday October 26th gave us the first signs of snow, thankfully it was a five minute wonder. The temperature this morning was 0c/32f the coldest so far this season
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