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Polystichum munitum

Western Sword Fern

Sword fern is the king of evergreen ferns providing year round visual interest and structure to the shaded garden. Large palm like fronds provides protective cover for birds and other wildlife year round. Perfect for grouping, it's an easy care plant that thrives in moisture and shade.

Benefits

Deer resistant and thrives on neglect
Transplants well and looks best planted in groups
Drought tolerant even though it thrives in moisture
Easy to grow and shade loving
Evergreen fronds create winter interest
Perfect cover for native birds and critters

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

Provide partial to full shade and fertile, well-drained soil. Trim off the oldest fronds each spring.


Height
2-3 Feet

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Spread
4-6 Feet

USDA Hardiness Zone 3-8

Native Range

Shaded woodlands from Alaska south into California and east into Idaho, Montana and South Dakota. Also native in Pennsylvania

Native Trivia

Songbird populations have dropped 70 percent in the last decade. Loss of native habitat has been a key factor in the decline making the use of a mix of native plants crucial for the living landscape.


"This fern combines well with woodland flowers, and provides cover for my feathered friends and me."

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
Medium Perennials
Exposure
Filtered Shade
Morning Sun / Afternoon Shade
Shade
Soil
Acidic
Well-drained
Soil Moisture Preference
Average
Moist
Moist but well-drained
Attracts Wildlife
Mammals
Songbirds
Critter Resistance
Deer Resistant
Habitat Collection
Dry Shade
Wet Sun
Native Habitat
Forest
Foliage Color
Green
Uses
Container
Cut or dried flower
Drought tolerant
Erosion control
Evergreen
Ground cover
Mass plant
Naturalizes
Native to
Alaska
California
Idaho
Montana
Oregon
Pennsylvania
South Dakota
Washington