Maidenhair fern is one of the most easily recognized ferns in moist woods in eastern and central North America. Each dark purple rachis (central leaf stem) grows to about a foot or more tall and then branches out into several fronds that curl into semi-circles. Each glossy, blade-shaped pinnule (leaflet) is about an inch long, notched and curled over on one side, protecting the spores beneath. They spread into clumps by rhizomes and once planted, do not like to be dug up and disturbed. These graceful ferns are best in a shady wooded area. Varieties of maidenhair fern, sometimes given species status, can be found in Alaska and from Japan, Korean and eastern China to Nepal.
Partial Shade, Full Shade
Bedding or Border, Groundcover, Understory
Resistant To Deer, Native to Midwest