Tree Fern Planting and Care
Tree Fern Hints and Tips
Tree ferns are unusual, architectural plants that are perfect for a warm, sheltered spot in the garden. The fronds unfurl from the trunk to create a beautiful, airy canopy above the thick trunk. They are relatively slow growing plants, but the trunk will eventually reach up to around 8ft, or more in warm damp conditions, with a wide speading canopy.
Tree ferns thrive best in humus rich, neutral or slightly acid soil, so before planting, ensure that you dig in plenty of compost. Plant the fern with the trunk just deep enough to keep it stable.
Tree ferns need to be kept damp so water the crown regularly, and spray the trunk with water in summer and during dry spells. Also apply liquid feed to the crown around once a month during the growing season from May to September.
Dicksonia antartica is evergreen, but in cold areas the fronds will die down in winter - these can be removed in spring, when the new growth will emerge. It is hardy, although will need some protection if kept outdoors all winter – pack the crown with straw, and wrap the trunk and crown in fleece during particularly cold spells. Tree ferns need a little care, but you will be well rewarded with an impressive and beautiful plant!