Display Blog Posts With Specified Tag
Sunday, September 9, 2018
Posted By: Rebecca van der Zalm in Ferns

Ancient history has a common thread, it is the fern. These plants have fossil records that date back to the age of Dinosaurs and are still thriving today. Ferns are a common feature of woodlands, mountainsides and other shaded, damp areas of our environment

In the 1800’s, Ferns were extremely popular indoor plants as well. In fact, fern-fever or 'Pteridomania' was actually a ‘thing’. In the Victorian era, fern-motifs were found on virtually everything! Fronds were pressed into albums and plants were put on display in homes and outdoors. Fern identification and collecting became a popular past-time. Many were gathered from the wild and relocated to glasshouses and conservatories. These activities led to the creation of the ‘Wardian Case’ to protect the ferns from urban pollution. Wardian Cases are often though of as the pre-cursor of the modern terrarium.

Collections become so large and popular that 'fern-houses', greenhouses devoted to ferns, became additions to homes while outdoor displays of ferns began to be called ‘ferneries’ Over time, fern-mania declined and other plants gained the forefront.

Today, planting and enjoying ferns is gathering momentum as a trend, both indoors and out. People are looking for form, texture, foliage and of course, low maintenance plants. Ferns fit the bill beautifully.
What makes ferns unique is that they do not flower or set seed. Instead they reproduce using spores that disperse and begin new plants. They are extremely diverse in habitat, form and size. Most inhabit warm, damp areas of the planet with only a few that thrive in dry cold spaces.

The ones we’ve chosen to focus on today are the most common and popular with home gardeners and landscapes in our area of the Pacific Northwest. So without further ado, here are 12 Fantastic Ferns for your garden.

Deer Fern

Deer Fern

Blechnum spicant

A native of Europe and Western North America, the Deer Fern, or Belchnum spicant is an attractive evergreen used in shady gardens and containers. They can also be used indoors as houseplants if given a cooler, humid environment. Deer ferns are unique in that they grow two types of leaves (fronds). Fertile fronds are taller and emerge from the middle of the clump. The sterile fronds are shorter, thicker and evergreen. They surround the center fronds. Hardy in USDA zones 5-8

Japanese Painted Fern

Japanese Painted Fern

Athyrium nipponicum var Pictum

Japanese Painted Ferns are perhaps one of the most beautiful and unique of all the ferns. In fact, it was the Perennial Plant Associations 2004 Plant of the Year. It is a smaller and slower growing deciduous plant planted for its amazing metallic, silver, green and purple-burgundy fronds. Native to Eastern Asia. Prefers rich, evenly moist soil and shade to part shade. Its an excellent plant for containers, mixed borders or shade gardens. Grows 12-24 inches tall and 12-18 inches wide

Tasmanian Tree Fern

Tasmanian Tree Fern

Dicksonia Antarctica

Dicksonia Antarctica, also known as the Tasmanian Tree Fern is a sought after evergreen tree fern native to Australia. Makes a dramatic statement in the garden. It naturally occurs in dense forests under a tree canopy that provides filtered sunlight and plenty of moisture. Shade or part shade is best. Soil should be loose, well drained and rich in organic material. It is slow growing, putting on only 3-4 cm per year. In the right environment, it can reach 10-12 metres in height. It is a tropical plant and will only grow in areas with mild winters or winter protection. Hardy only to Zone 9-11

Harts Tongue Fern

Harts Tongue Fern

Asplenium scolopendrium

The Hart’s Tongue Fern has an unusual, almost tropical appearance with wide leathery green, strap shaped fronds. Grows in a low clump. Ideal for woodland and rock gardens. Best grown in part to full shade. Prefers good drainage and slightly alkaline soils. Can grow 1-3ft across at maturity. Hardy to Zone 5

Tassel Fern

Tassel Fern

Polystichum polyblepharum

This lovely vase shaped fern features lustrous, shiny, dark green fronds that add elegance to shaded gardens. Fronds on the Tassel Fern are frosted on the reverse with a rusty brown stem. Quite attractive as the new fronds unfurl. Best grown in shade to part shade in moist, humus rich, acidic soils. Grows 18-24 inches tall and 18-24 inches wide. Hardy to Zone 5

Western Sword Fern

Western Sword Fern

Polystichum munitum

The Western Sword Fern is one of the most robust and reliable of the native ferns. It features great texture with glossy, leathery, toothed foliage that is dark green in colour. Any visit to our mountains and woods is sure to reveal this plant in abundance. Foliage is evergreen and vigorous. Forms clumps that may be up to 4ft tall and wide! Best grown in woodland areas in shade to part shade. Prefers moist, rich, well drained soil. Hardy to Zone 4

Autumn Brilliance Fern

Autumn Brilliance Fern

Dryopteris erythrosora ‘Autumn Brilliance’

This colourful fern features pink fiddleheads that turn into coppery orange, glossy fronds. These turn a shiny dark green in summer through the cool season. A fantastic fern for lightening up a darker area. Although it prefers moist, rich, well drained soils, it develops some drought tolerance once established. Hardy to Zone 5 and can stay evergreen in frost-free areas. Grows 18-24 inches in height and spread.

American Maidenhair Fern

American Maidenhair Fern

Adiantum pedatum

The American Maidenhair Fern, also known as the Northern Maidenhair Fern, is probably the most graceful and delicate in appearance of all the native ferns. Airy, fan-shaped green fronds are held on thin black stems in tight clumps. It is also frequently used as a houseplant. These plants appreciate a moist, rich soil. Best in shade to part shade. Grows 12-20 inches in height. Deciduous. Hardy in zones 4-9

Himalayan Maidenhair Fern

Himalayan Maidenhair Fern

Adiantum venustum

This shorter growing Adiatum variety also features a delicate appearance with black stems holding small green leaves. Foliage is much denser than the American Maidenhair. Habit is low and spreading. A rich, moist soil in shade to part shade is best. Grows 8-12 inches in height and 12-24 inches wide. Hardy in zones 5-8

Dyces Holly Fern

Dyce’s Holly Fern

Polystichum x dycei

Shaded gardens get a bold and elegant look with this large holly fern. Sturdy, arching fronds with glossy dark green foliage emerge from the middle of the crown giving a symmetrical appearance. Small bulbils are produced on the fronds in late summer to fall. Easy to establish in the landscape, forming handsome, deer resistant clumps. Evergreen. Best grown in shade to part shade in consistently moist soil. Can grow 3-4 tall and wide. Hardy in USDA zones 6-8

Japanese Holly Fern

Japanese Holly Fern

Cyrtomium fortunei

The Japanese Holly Fern provides unique form and texture. 1-2ft long fronds are stiff, upright and arch outwards from the middle of the plant. They begin light green and age to a dark green over time. Grows well under trees and in containers. While it is evergreen in mild climates, clean and trim off tired looking foliage after winter. Best grown in shade to part shade in consistently moist soils. Hardy in zones 6-8

Soft Shield Fern

Soft Shield Fern

Polystichum setiferum

The Soft Shield Fern provides outstanding foliage for shade. Feathery, dark green fronds look tropical, but are actually hardy! A great contrast to bold leaved plants. This lovely, lacey fern is an evergreen to semi-evergreen fern that is extremely popular in Europe. It forms a medium sized clump of soft textured fronds that are glossy dark green.Best grown in shade to part shade in consistently moist, slightly acidic soil. Naturalizes well. Grows 2-3 ft tall and wide. Hardy in zones 6-8

If your looking to add ferns to your garden, drop by or give us a call at 604.882.1201 during business hours. As always, our in-store selection is always changing so contact us in advance if you are looking for something in particular. We hope that their is a space in your garden or home to add a fern or two to your collection. Enjoy!


Friday, May 15, 2015
Posted By: Rebecca van der Zalm in Shade Gardening

If we had a dollar everytime someone asked, I have a shady spot, what can I plant?, we would be living in the lap of luxury. Contrary to popular belief, there are actually dozens, if not hundreds of plants that prefer the shade. One of the most common is the Hydrangea. Famous for their blue, pink or white, mophead or lacecap flowers, they are an excellent option for those of you blessed with shade. Here are 6 new or unique Hydrangea varieties to tempt you this Spring!

Lets Dance Starlight Bigleaf Hydrangea

Let's Dance Starlight Bigleaf Hydrangea

This is the first, re-blooming lacecap hydrangea. Starlight has elegant summer flowers held upright on strong stems. Blooms every year. Prefers to be grown in part shade / part sun in moist, but well drained soils. The soil and pH affects bloom colour. Acidic soils produce blue flowers, alkaline soils create pink flowers. Prune after flowering. Grows to a height and spread of 2-3ft. Hardy to zone 6.

Blue Enchantress Hydrangea

Blue Enchantress Hydrangea

Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Monmar’

Blue Enchantress is an exquisite, new, re-blooming hydrangea with stately ruby-black stems supporting big, beautiful, mophead hydrangea flowers. Blooming continuously through summer, the flowers are blue in acidic soils and pink in more alkaline ones. Flowers age to a vintage cream-splashed green. Prized for cut or dried flower arrangements. A perfect plant for a dappled shade border. Best grown in part shade and moist, but well drained soils. Needs regular watering. Will grow 3-5ft tall and wide. Hardy to Zone 6.

Sweet and Salsa Showstopper Hydrangea

Sweet and Salsa Showstopper Hydrangea

Hydrangea 'Sweet and Salsa'

This exciting new Hydrangea from the HGTV Home Collection features bicolor red and white flowers with shades of pink that appear in late spring into late Summer. Foliage is equally attractive in shades of green and burgundy red-bronze. Bloom colour changes depending on soil pH. Best when planted in part shade or in areas that have cool afternoons. To preserve the flower heads, cut long stems and hang upside down in a cool, dry dark area and soon after, you’ll have created ever-lasting flowers! Grows 2-3ft high and 3-5ft wide. Hardy to zone 6.

Endless Summer Hydrangea

Endless Summer Hydrangea

‘Endless Summer’ is the original repeat blooming Hydrangea. It has been around for a couple of years now, but is still an awesome variety. Most older hydrangeas flower on old wood (stems that grew last year). This variety flowers on both old and new wood, giving it the ability to bloom more often and more profusely. Flower colour changes according to soil pH and blooms in late spring through late Summer. Best grown in full to part shade and moist, but well drained soil. For best results, keep soil evenly moist and fertilize with a slow release plant food in spring or early summer before blooms appear. Grows to 3-6ft high and wide. As it is a continuous bloomer, prune this one differently. Do not prune in the fall. Instead, wait until Spring when the plant has started to grow. Prune the branches above the new green growth.

Red n Pretty Hydrangea

Hydrangea ‘Red n Pretty’

Hydrangea macrophylla 'Monred'

‘Red n Pretty’ Hydrangea is a superb shrub for accent, specimen or border use in semi-shaded areas. Desired for the splendid, abundant, showy flower clusters in shades of red appear in Summer. Handsome foliage on boldly branched, rounded form. Deciduous. Best grown in part sun / part shade and moist, but well drained soils. Needs regular watering, more often in extreme heat. A moderate grower from 4-6ft tall and 3-4ft wide. Hardy to zone 6.

Plum Passion Hydrangea

Plum Passion Hydrangea

Hydrangea aspera ‘Plum Passion’

‘Plum Passion’ is the first every purple leaved Hydrangea to grace North American gardens. Discovered in China, this unique shrub was brought to Monrovia by famed plant explorer Dan Hinkley. Foliage emerges greenish-purple aging to deep purple on the upper side of the leaf and rosy purple on the underside. Wispy, mid-sized, summer blooming, lace-cap type flowers are somewhat insignificant in contrast with the dramatic, colourful foliage. Excellent fall colour too! Deciduous. Like all Hydrangeas is does best in shade to part shade in moist, but well drained soils. Reaches 5-6ft tall and wide. Hardy to zone 7.

How to Grow Hydrangeas

Hydranges are fairly low maintenance, easy to grow deciduous shrubs. Find a shade to part shade location with moist, but well drained soil. Dig the hole, situate the plant and apply a Transplant fertilizer or Bonemeal. Be aware that if you use bonemeal, you may actually be turning the flower colour pink as explained in the next section. Water frequently, but avoid over-watering. Yellowing leaves may be an indicator of over-watering. Fertilize with an all-purpose fertilizer in early spring before flowers appear. If required, prune after flowering on most varieties. On reblooming or endless summer varieties, wait to prune until spring.

How to Change the Colour of Your Hydrangea Flowers

How to change the colour of your hydrangeas flowers is a very commonly asked question. White flowered varieties will not change colour.  Only Blue or Pink flowering varieties are affected. Hydrangea flowers change their colour overtime based on the soil acidity and presence of Aluminum Sulphate in the soil. In acidic soils,(a pH less than 7), Hydrangea take in Aluminum and their flower colour becomes bluish. In alkaline or sweet soils (pH greater than 7), the ability to bring in Aluminum Sulphate is curtailed and the flower colour changes to pink. This transition is gradual and can take a year or more to complete. To turn your flower colour blue, simply purchase and Acidifying fertilizer and/or Aluminum Sulphate (both available at Art's Nursery) and apply in early spring. To change your flower colour to pink, add lime.

For more information about Hydrangeas, visit us in person at Art's Nursery, or give us a call at 604.882.1201. As always, our selection and availability is always changing. If you are making a special trip, please call ahead to confirm availability.


Monday, March 10, 2014
Posted By: Lyle Courtice A.H. in Shade Gardening

Probably my most favorite place in any garden is a cool shady woodland setting.

Such reprieves are needed to help calm the nerves and revitalize the spirit. Lush growth, abounding textures and intriguing flowers and fruit all combine to create a serene space where one can admire and contemplate - what better place to spend a lazy afternoon.

Here are just a few of the marvelous woodland gems available this season (late March through April 2014)  to help you create your own shady oasis.

actea pachypoda misty blue

Doll's Eyes

Actaea pachypoda ‘Misty Blue’

Supernal native woodland perennial from Eastern North America with a mounding habit and lacy blue-green foliage. Tall stems of fluffy white panicles in spring through early summer are followed in fall by striking pure white berries with contrasting red pedicels. Tolerates most soil types but requires even moisture in light to medium shade.
Height: 60-90cm Spread: 60-90cm Zone: 3

arisaema_silverfeathers1

Japanese Cobra Lily

Arisaema sikokianum “Silver Feathers”

A selection of A. sikokianum with dramatic silver feather patterns in the center of each leaflet. The flower is a purple-black pitcher with white stripes and a greenish inside, the spadix is large, white and mushroom-like. Partial shade with sharp drainage.
Height: 40-60cm Spread: 20-30cm Zone: 4

beesia calthifolia

Beesia calthifolia

A beautiful clumping evergreen perennial from China, having glossy heart-shaped green leaves with that gasoline sheen; new growth is bronze-red. Tall spikes of small white flowers through spring and summer. Superb, tidy groundcover for partial shade; prefers a humus rich, well drained soil. Tolerates dry shade. Slow to establish.
Height: 30cm Spread: 30cm+ Zone: 6

coptis dissecta

Coptis japonica var. dissecta

Little known evergreen perennial from Japan's mountainous woodlands, plants form tidy clumps of glossy, dark green parsley-like leaves. Tall dark spikes of starry white flowers in early spring followed by pin-wheel shaped seed pods. Deep purple winter colouring. Average soil in light to medium shade. Carefree groundcover.
Height: 15cm Spread: 30cm Zone: 5

epimedium yokihi

Japanese Barrenwort

Epimedium x ‘Yokihi’

A vigorous Japanese hybrid that forms a broad mound of dark green leaves; deciduous. Wiry flower stems dance with spider-like blooms that have golden yellow spurs backed by bright cherry red sepals - absolutely stunning! Flowers early spring repeating in summer. Partial shade in average to humus rich well drained soil.
Height: 30cm Spread: 50-60cm Zone: 4

pteridophyllum racemosum - poppy fern

Poppy Fern

Pteridophyllum racemosum

Unique perennial endemic to the mountains of Japan. Plants form rosettes of dark green, fern-like leaves which are topped by short (30cm) spikes of pendulous clean white flowers; spring into summer. Prefers moist, humus rich, well drained soil in cool shade. Makes and excellent woodland groundcover or a one-of-a-kind container specimen.
Height: 15-30cm Spread: 30cm+ Zone: 5 (4)

syneilesis palmata - Umbrella Plant

Umbrella Plant

Syneilesis palmate

Sturdy woodland perennial from Asia that produces silky umbrellas that open to rounded, palmate leaves of medium to dark green. Panicles of fuzzy white flowers from midsummer into fall. Prefers partial shade and good drainage in a cool woodland site. Easy to grow and maintenance free!
Height: 60-90cm Spread: 60-90cm Zone: 5 (4)

How To Order These New & Unique Plants

These unique and unusual woodland plants will be available at Art's Nursery by late March or early April 2014, depending on the weather. As they are somewhat rare, please call ahead, 604.882.1201, to confirm availability as quantities may be limited. Pre-orders are being accepted.


Sponsored Advertisement

Be Part Of Our Growing Community!

Subscribe, Like or Follow Us Online

  Learn More >>

Blog Profile

arts nursery logo
Art's Nursery is a 10+ acre retail and wholesale garden centre located in Surrey, a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. We've been in business at this same location since 1973 and we're proud to serve you today!

We carry an incredible selection of plants, shrubs, trees, annuals, perennials, vines, groundcovers, roses and much more. Soils, bulk materials, pottery and a variety of garden accents are also available.

Our plant selection is so large that you can actually drive a golf cart while you shop!

We pride ourselves on providing high quality plant, expert advice and an exceptional gardening experience.


Subscribe To Our Newsletter


Blog Search

Recent Posts

Tuesday, November 6, 2018
Dwarf Conifers and Deciduous Trees For the Smaller Yard

Our world can change so quickly. We move into our first home with its tiny yard. We leave a larger...

Tuesday, November 6, 2018
November 2018 in Your Garden

Happy November people!!! Scarecrow season was a Spooktacular success and thank you to all who came ...

Friday, October 5, 2018
Fall Colour Plants With Two Jobs

I think it is safe to say that all of us plant our gardens with a vision in mind that it will be bea...

Friday, October 5, 2018
Green Manure And Cover Crops

Monday, September 10, 2018
From Garden to Table

On August 29th, I was lucky enough to attend the Coquitlam Farmer’s Market Long Table Dinner, to whi...

Sunday, September 9, 2018
Cool and Crisp Fall Container Recipe

In this design we're featuring a cool and crisp container planting for early Fall. It includes 10 pl...

Sunday, September 9, 2018
12 Fantastic Ferns

Ancient history has a common thread, it is the fern. These plants have fossil records that date back...

Friday, September 7, 2018
20 New Bulbs for 2018

September is the month where all the new bulbs for Fall arrive and are put out on display. This year...


Tag Cloud

deciduous trees smaller conifers smaller yards dwarf conifers small space gardeningfall fall gardening winter gardening November plants with fall colour fall colour winter berries fall foliage plant combinationsgreen manure cover crops fall crops fall rye rejuvenation mixgarden. edibles fall veggies farmers markets long table dinner kale fall and winter gardensfall container recipe container plantings container design cool and crispferns woodland plants tree ferns polystichum adiantum dryopteris plants for shadebulbs new bulbs spring bulbs flower bulbs new bulbs for 2018 tulips iris anemone hyacinth eremurusrare plants unusual plants collectors plants senecio angel wings eucalyptus russelia abutilon echium dendroserisdormant oil dormant oil spray dormant oil kit insect damage fruit trees protect from insects protect from fungusTop 6 Colourful Winter Plants Winter Interest Plant for Winter Colour Cold Hardy Plants Top 6 Plants Top 6 Winter Plants for Winter Interest Winter Plants Viburnum Davidii Leucothoe Rainbow Crabapple Red Sentinel Crabapple Tree Evergreen Shrub Skimmia Female Cedar Sienna Sunset Globe Cedar Skimmia Cedar for Winter Colorful Crabapple Fruit Tree Winteramaryllis hippeastrum buy amaryllis amaryllis bulbs indoor bulbs amaryllis care waxed amaryllis fall bulbs daffodils colourful companions new flower bulbsgrasses ornamental grasses gardening cool season grass warm season grass miscanthus pennisetum fall planters fall plantsplantsomethingbc contest bcplantstropical tropical plants outdoor tropical palm trees palms banana plants jasmine monkey puzzle tree phormium new Zealand flax agapanthus dahlias lilies canna calla florissastrawberries strawberry strawberry care strawberry varieties day neutral strawberries june bearing strawberries alpine strawberries everbearing strawberries growing strawberries types of strawberrieshellebore helleborus spring series hellebore Lenten rose Christmas rose perennial shade perennials annas red pennys pink winter jewels series gold collection hellebores winter dreams hellebores

Blog Roll

Other interesting gardening blogs that we follow include:

Blog RSS Feed

Keep in touch by subscribing to our RSS/Atom News Feeds


Subscribe Via FeedBurner

 Subscribe in a reader

Copyright (c) 2018 Art's Nursery Ltd.  | 8940 192nd Street, Surrey, BC, Canada, V4N 3W8  | tel: 604.882.1201  | SiteMap  | Privacy Statement |