A bucket full of ferns from J-P.A few days before Christmas he arrived in town to stay with his mother, bringing the ferns. I discovered he'd actually ordered two of each, and was planning a fernery of his own in the courtyard of his mother's house. We sat at her kitchen table and carefully labelled them all and split some that had arrived as single plants. Then I brought my share home and potted them up in the sleet. They are all perfectly hardy, so they should be fine. There are 13 of them, all different.
The new ferns, potted up.They range from species that will get really tall like the Royal Fern, to low growing spreaders like Fortunes Holly Fern. Many are native to France, like the Scaly Male Fern and the Soft Shield Fern. One, the Sensitive Fern, is North American and another, the Mother Shield Fern, is Australian. J-P warned me that the Sensitive Fern will need a lot of water, and the Mother Shield Fern will spread quickly and widely. One of them rejoices in the scientific name of Matteuccia struthiopteris (apparently it's named after an Italian phycisist and an ostrich wing...)
Part of the fernery, before the new additions.For any of you who are Fern Nerds, here is the complete list: Fern List
Much of the garden at the back of the house gets no sun, or very little. The ferns should thrive here, and watering them should not be a problem. The next big challenge is planting out the section of the garden that does get sun, and where the soil is mostly clay. In the summer it is baking hot and dry, and in the winter, cold and wet. Nothing I've planted so far has been a great success. Ideas please?!