Soft tree ferns, as dicksonia antarctica, are known will make a beautiful architectural statement in the garden.
They are native to Australia and can grow up to 20ft tall, with fronds up to 10ft long.
Ferns are considered to be 'top feeders' as the plant growth area occupies around 12 inches (30cm) below the crown/top of the plant. So water and feed ferns from the top.
The remainder of the trunk is made up of the root system and old frond bases.
In its natural environment the crown is often found to be full of decaying leaf matter that has fallen. This helps retain moisture, protects the crown in winter from the cold and provides nutrient as the leaf matter decomposes.
In the UK the crown WILL need protecting in most areas with straw or fleece. When the last frost is gone and before the fronds start to unfurl, remove your winter protection to avoid hindering the growth of new fronds.
On arrival, your tree fern should be anchored vertically and planted about 10cm deep and thoroughly soaked (remember to water the crown of the plant as well as the trunk).
Make sure the crown of the fern is always kept moist and during the summer you may need to water your fern daily.
Native to: Australia
Trunk height: 1ft
Eventual height: up to 20ft
Eventual frond width: up to 10ft
Hardiness: hardy to minus 10 but only for very short periods
Sun: likes moist, shady conditions with good soil drainage but with enough water will tolerate sun
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