• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Onoclea sensibilis

Sensitive fern

AGM plants

AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

  • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
  • Available to buy
  • Of good constitution
  • Essentially stable in form & colour
  • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases
Sensitive fern

© � RHS 2001

  • Other common names Sensitive fern
    Bead fern

    Japanese ostrich fern
    Ostrich fern

    see more
  • Genus Onoclea are deciduous ferns with creeping rhizomes and pinnately divided sterile fronds; spores borne on more erect, blackish, contracted fertile fronds

  • Family Onocleaceae / Onocleaceae

  • Species O. sensibilis is a deciduous, rhizomatous fern forming extensive colonies of broad, light green, pinnate fronds to 60cm in length, the pinnae deeply lobed. Shorter, narrow fertile fronds have much reduced, blackish lobes

  • Plant range E North America, Asia

Characteristics

  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Suckering

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)
    Old hardiness ratings

    While we update our systems with the new hardiness ratings you may still see old hardiness ratings in your search results. These are denoted as 'Old'.

    • H1 - Requires heated glass
    • H2 - Requires unheated glass
    • H3 - Hardy outside in some regions of the UK
    • H4 - Hardy throughout the UK
    • H1 + H3 - Requires heated glass but may be grown outside in summer

    For full details of the hardiness ratings see

    see more

    H6

Colour

Sunlight

  • Partial Shade

  • Full Shade

  • Aspect South-facing or North-facing or West-facing or East-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered

Soil

  • Chalk

    Clay

  • Chalk

    Loam

  • Chalk

    Sand

  • MoisturePoorly-drained, Moist but well-drained

  • SoilClay, Loam, Sand

  • pHAcid, Neutral

Size

  • Ultimate height

    0.5-1 metres

  • Ultimate spread

    1.5-2.5 metres

  • Time to ultimate height

    5-10 years

How to grow

Cultivation Easy to grow in most cool, moist, shaded sites. Good for pondside plantings but may become invasive in smaller gardens

Propagation Propagate by sowing spores as soon as ripe or by division in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types Flower borders and beds Low Maintenance Underplanting of Roses and Shrubs Cottage & Informal Garden Wildflower meadow

How to care

Pruning Dead or damaged fronds may be removed as necessary

Pests Generally pest free outdoors

Diseases Generally disease free outdoors

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