Lady Fern - Destined for Backyard - June 2020
I recently picked up this fern at Home Depot on a whim. Had no intention of buying a fern, but as I was looking at the hostas, I saw it and thought....hmmm...that green fern is calling to me. If you've been reading along over the years, you'll know two things:
1. I'm a shade gardener.
2. I love ferns.
I have a few kinds, but it seems that the two that are consistently successful for me are: Ostrich Ferns. And I have one, ignored, but thriving Japanese Painted Fern. I just recently transplanted ten (10) Ostrich Ferns that I've been calling "Survivor Ferns" from our fenceline to a spot on the plan that called for ferns. I also have this other fern - that I call our "Teardown Fern" - which came from my sister-in-laws lot before she built her house. I stuck it in the far back of our lot and it has been doing really quite well. Ignored for the most part, too.
This new fern - pictured above - kinda resembles that "Teardown Fern". Turns out, this new one is called a "Felix Femina" fern.
The Missouri Botanical Garden tell us that the common name for felix femina is "Lady Fern". From their listing:
Athyrium filix-femina, commonly called lady fern, is a deciduous fern that features lacy-cut, erect or ascending, 2 to 3-pinnate or pinnatifid, finely-divided, lanceolate, light green fronds which grow in a dense circular shuttlecock-like clump to 2-3' tall. Each frond (leaf) has twenty to thirty pairs of elliptic non-opposite pinna (leaflets) with narrow pointed tips. Each pinna is divided into deeply-cut lanceolate to oblong pinnules (subleaflets).https://www.prairienursery.com/lady-fern-athyrium-filix-femina.html
But, take a look at the photo right above. It lists this: Hardy: 30 F.
Zone 3 gets down to NEGATIVE THIRTY (-30) DEGREES.
Did they forget the (-) symbol? Or, if I plant this in the ground is it not destined to come back next year? I was thinking of putting it back by the Teardown Fern if it was going to survive year-over-year, but maybe it should be in a container that we keep close to the patio to enjoy it for the one year it lives?