Not the plant you're looking for? Search over 300,000 plants

Athyrium filix-femina

lady fern

A. filix-femina is a vigorous deciduous fern to 80cm or more, forming a clump of fresh-green, lacy, bipinnate, lance-shaped fronds, the segments with toothed margins. In some plants the midrib is red, in others green

Other common names
female polypody

Unlimited days out

Individual RHS membership from £47.25

Complete now
Buy this plant
Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
0.5–1 metres
Growing conditions
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Green
Autumn Green
Winter
Position
  • Full shade
  • Partial shade
Aspect

North–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H6
Botanical details
Family
Woodsiaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Clump forming
Genus

Athyrium are deciduous ferns with erect or creeping rhizomes bearing usually pinnate to tripinnate fronds, often of thin texture, and they are especially shade-tolerant

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Temp. N. Hemis.

How to grow

Cultivation

Easy to grow in fertile, moist neutral to acid soil enriched with leaf mould or garden compost, in a shady sheltered site

Propagation

Propagate by sowing spores in mid to late summer or by division in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Underplanting of roses and shrubs
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Dead or damaged fronds may be removed as necessary

Pests

Generally pest free out of doors

Diseases

Generally disease free outdoors

My Garden

Your free RHS gardening coach

Keep track of your plants with reminders & care tips – all to help you grow successfully

My plants
My calendar

My plants

My calendar

My ideas
Manage membership

My ideas

My advice

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.