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Polystichum aculeatum

Hard Shield Fern

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Item #: 4994

Zones: 4a to 7b

Dormancy: Evergreen

Height: 24" tall

Culture: Light Shade

Origin: Europe

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

I fell in love with this magnificent fern when I first visited the wonderful Cornell Plantation gardens. This easy-to-grow, evergreen European native is not to be ignored by those of you in colder temperate climates. Although it prefers damp, alkaline soils, it has fared surprisingly well in our hot, dry, amended sand. The elegant 3' wide x 2' tall clumps are composed of 2' long, narrow, glossy dark green, upright fronds that are hard to the touch. This is in contrast to its look-alike, P. setiferum, the soft shield fern.