Matteuccia struthiopteris, commonly called Fiddlehead or Ostrich Fern, offers an erect, feathery plume of vibrant, lush green, divided,
fronds that arch gracefully outward into a symmetric
So interesting to watch grow and examine at all maturity levels, Ostrich Fern has a magnificently dramatic effect when used for
foliage backdrops, foundations, boundaries, and fresh arrangements.
It grows from an entirely vertical crown but sends out lateral
to form new crowns.
This unique trait makes Ostrich fern perfect for resisting floodwater destruction (like creek banks) because it can form such dense colonies.
Ostrich fern will reward you with a quick-growing, lush thicket if you treat her to a light mulching of leaves around slightly exposed crowns.
She does require moist soil, especially in hot, dry climates and prefers loamy,
-rich soil in
with only morning sun.
If you do have heavy, clay soil, you will find that Ostrich Fern is also willing to grow there, and will reward you even more handsomely if you amend the soil.
tightly wound immature fronds (called fiddleheads) appear in spring, offering a delightful addition to your cooking repertoire as well as visual texture and interest to the garden.
Fertile fronds are produced after the vegetative fronds and persist throughout the following winter; the
shed in mid-winter.
growth rate, under good conditions you can expect Ostrich Fern to spread resonably fast by stout
People love this fern because it is low-maintenance and easy to grow while offering reliable, rich color and height to
Things to Note
must be minimal or indirect.
After spring, these are trimmed cut back to about 8 inches tall for shipment and will arrive as such.
fiddleheads are considered a delicacy and have been named Vermont's state vegetable.
Try cooking these delightful vegetables by simply harvesting when about two inches from the ground and still tightly rolled.
Treat them as you would asparagus or try them in quiches and soups. Delicious!
Ostrich ferns will grow quite large, but keep in mind that the larger they are the more moisture they will require.
Ostrich ferns will thrive in
but anticipate them to be smaller than if they were placed in
when planning your garden.
If you are considering purchasing this plant in bare root form,
about bare root plants
so you know what to expect.