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OSMUNDA claytoniana

Image of Osmunda claytoniana

Family

Osmundaceae

Botanical Name

OSMUNDA claytoniana

Plant Common Name

Interrupted Fern

General Description

A clump-forming herbaceous perennial with stately fronds "interrupted" by curious spore-bearing bodies that resemble shriveled bunches of grapes, this eastern North American and east Asian native is among the first ferns to appear in spring. Silky down from the emerging fiddleheads is collected by hummingbirds to furnish their nests. The fiddleheads unfurl to form a lush whorl of fresh green foliage, achieving imposing proportions in rich soil.

This impressive and interesting fern grows easily in any acidy, moist, humus-rich soil in partial shade. In damp hollows it tolerates full sun. Use it as a specimen or in scattered groups in the shade or woodland garden.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    2 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6

  • Plant Type

    Fern

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    2'-4' / 0.6m - 1.2m

  • Width

    2'-3' / 0.6m - 0.9m

  • Native To

    Northeastern United States, Eastern Asia

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    None

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Groundcover, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes