Growing guide

How to grow ferns

Providing form and texture, ferns are easy to grow and make ideal foliage plants for a shady spot. Their unfurling new growth can be delicate and feathery or large and lush, ensuring there are ferns to suit every style and size of garden.

Quick facts

  • Easy to grow and maintain
  • Plants last for many years
  • Ferns like shade and soil improved with organic matter
  • Many are evergreen
  • Plant in autumn or spring for best establishment
  • Cut back deciduous types in winter before new spring growth starts
  • Make new plants by dividing established plants or by growing from spores

All you need to know

Before you get started
Ongoing care
Pruning and training
While we think all this information will be helpful to you, we always recommend to read the instruction labels on your plants.

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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.