How Do You Take Care Of A Ghost Fern?

What is a ghost fern?

Ghost Fern is a cross between Japanese Painted Fern (Athyrium niponicum ‘Pictum’) and Lady Fern (Athyrium filix-femina), and is most known for its erect starry silvery leaf.

The rich crimson midribs that flow through each frond attract the attention, displaying its finest steely-gray leaves in spring and turning more soft-gray/blueish as heat arrives.

This shade tolerant perennial is beneficial in a variety of landscape situations, including mass plantings, rock gardens, and borders.

How do you take care of a ghost fern?

It’s a slow-growing plant with gorgeous upright fronds dusted with silver. The plants can reach a height of 24 to 36 inches.

Because of the wonderful colours of ghost fern, it pairs well with plants that have silver accents, such as brunnera, silvery heuchera, and lungwort.

Ghost fern is also deer resistant and can withstand brief periods of drought. Hardy in zones 4–8.

Grow ghost fern on soil that is wet yet well-drained. It loves a lot of organic matter in the soil, so add compost if you have sand or clay.

Ghost fern prefers regular soil moisture, however it is more drought resistant than other perennial ferns.

Once established, you should be able to leave your ghost fern alone for the most part. If necessary, water during a drought.

There are few pests that will trouble the ferns, and if you have rabbits who enjoy munching on foliage, they will most likely avoid these plants.

To reproduce the fern, just dig it up in early spring and relocate clumps to different locations.

Is ghost fern invasive?

Ghost fern is not invasive. There has been a lot of debate in the past few decades about whether certain plants should be called invasive species or not.

This is because some plants can have negative effects on the environment but they do not fit into the typical definition of being a pest or weed.

While many fern species are considered invasive, the ghost fern poses no such issues for gardeners.

Where does ghost fern grows?

The ghost fern thrives in protected, partially shaded places.

When the plant is exposed to direct sunlight, it can bleach the leaves and change their appearance.

They do, however, require some sunshine (about 4 hours a day) to bring out the full colour of the fronds.

The USDA hardiness zones 4-8 are suitable.

Is ghost fern a perennial?

A robust and easy-to-grow fern with a clean, formal, tall mound of stiff, silver-green fronds with deep purple midribs. Ideal for the forest garden as a backdrop to hostas or in combination with coral bells.

Thrives in damp, shaded conditions, however it is more tolerant of brief dry spells than other ferns of its kind. A perennial herbaceous plant.

How big does a ghost fern get?

Ghost ferns are a sophisticated hybrid of Japanese painted and lady ferns that showcase the finest of both parents.

It’s a slow-growing plant with gorgeous upright fronds dusted with silver.

The plants can reach a height of 24 to 36 inches. Because of the wonderful colours of ghost fern, it pairs well with plants that have silver accents, such as brunnera, silvery heuchera, and lungwort.

Is the ghost fern deciduous?

Ghost fern is a deciduous hybrid fern (Athyrium niponicum var. pictum and Athyrium filix-femina) that is noted for its upright silvery foliage.

Silvery foliage is acquired from its Japanese painted fern parent and upright habit from its lady fern parent.

It typically grows to 30” tall. It features a slowly spreading clump of fronds that are a soft grayish-green with an overlay of silvery hues accented by contrasting dark maroon midribs.

Silvering is best in the spring, with fronds becoming more grayish-green as hot temperatures arrive.

How much sun can a ghost fern take?

Ghost fern is a shade-loving plant, needing some hours of direct sunlight per day.

It is noted for being tolerant of brief dry spells, however it does best in moist conditions.

The plants require full sun to thrive, the optimum amount of sun or shade each plant needs to thrive: Full Sun (6+ hours), Part Sun (4-6 hours), and Full Shade (up to 4 hours).

How do you propagate ghost fern?

Ghost fern is a hybrid of two ferns: Japanese painted and lady ferns. Although there are a few methods for propagating ghost ferns, division is the most effective. Ferns should ideally be propagated in the spring.

Begin by soaking the plant in water.

Then gradually take it from its container (or from the patch of soil in which it is growing).

Divide the plant into 2-3 clumps, making sure that each clump has at least one growing point (this is where the new fronds will start to grow from).

Replant these clumps in nutrient-rich, well-drained soil and keep them wet at all times, at least until new fronds develop.

If you wish to employ the spores for propagation instead, follow these steps:

Find the yellow-green spore cluster under the fern leaves.

Place the frond on wax paper for a day or two to allow the spores to fall out.

To kill germs, microwave the fronds with some potting mix (be careful not to burn yourself).

Place them in a plastic-wrapped container near a window.

Over time, you’ll notice it begin to grow; at this point, begin exposing the plant to air.

Fronds should emerge during the following 6-8 weeks, after which the ferns should be moved to separate pots or into the soil.

Is a ghost fern the same as a Japanese painted fern?

Ghost is a selection from the late Nancy Sweet’s suburban Richmond garden and is most likely a natural hybrid of the Japanese painted fern and the European lady fern.

It is gray-green and vigorous, reaching a height of two feet.

It is ideal for illuminating a gloomy section of the garden. It keeps its freshness throughout the summer with moderate shade and consistent watering.

What are the Ghost Fern Uses?

In the garden, ghost ferns are generally utilized for their leaves colour and are fantastic since they survive a few years and are resistant to rabbits and animals.

They also attract a lot of butterflies.

While they serve no purpose, they offer texture and give a lot of ground cover.

They are frequently planted with hostas (another foliage plant) to bring colour to your landscape.

Is Ghost fern Toxic?

Because it is susceptible to bleached fronds when exposed to too much light, it should be planted in a protected and moist place away from the intense summer rays.

Parts of it are known to be poisonous to both animals and people; use caution when planting near children and pets.

It has been shown to be deer and rabbit resistant.

Do Ghost fern needs pruning?

Because the plant is deciduous in the winter, it is advisable not to remove any old fronds in order to protect the crowns and delicate sprouts.

In the spring, which is also the optimum time to propagate the plant, old fronds can be removed.

Aside from that, the ghost fern is a low-maintenance plant that does not require regular pruning.

Do Ghost fern flowers?

Ghost Athyrium ferns look their finest when they have dark purple midribs (stems) and towering fronds in an apple green tint with a tinge of silver.

The fronds also have an upright growth tendency. The plant itself does not bloom.

Is Ghost fern fast grower?

If you maintain the soil properly, the ghost fern will grow slowly. The ghost fern expands slowly over time and may reach a height of 24″ – 36″ inches tall, with each plant covering an area of 12″ – 18″ inches.

Ghost ferns are perennials that can live for 3-4 years. These are deciduous ferns that lose their leaves in the winter. New growth occurs in early spring and continues through the summer.

Do Ghost fern needs fertilizers?

It is important to keep the soil moist and well-drained while maintaining the ideal pH level (pH 5.5-6.0).

Fertilizer helps the plants grow larger, however, do not overfeed them. Avoid using a nitrogen-rich fertilizer for your ferns, as too much of this results in tall, spindly growth with few leaves and small stalks.

Ghost Athyrium require organic matter to grow and it’s recommended to use compost/mulch as fertilizer, especially if you’re growing the ferns in the sand.

Do Ghost fern likes humidity?

It is important to keep the soil moist, especially in the summer. Ghost fern, many of which are tropical natives, prefer high humidity, which is why they thrive in bathrooms.

However, by placing the pots on a pebble-lined tray, you may boost the humidity surrounding the ferns.

Fill the pebbles with water, making sure the bottoms of the pots do not contact the water in the tray.

Evaporation will increase the humidity around the plants. The best approach is to place a humidifier near the plants.

Can ghost ferns be divided?

Clump-forming ferns, such as Ghost Fern, can be split every three to four years. When the plant becomes crowded and rises above soil level, it’s time to divide it.

Spring is an excellent season to divide your fern. In the fall, divisions can also be established.

Dig up your plant and chop it into many pieces using a sharp knife. Backfill with modified soil after replanting in a prepared hole.

These are wild plants that require rich, moisture-retaining soil, so add plenty of organic matter to your soil, such as compost or composted sheep dung.

Fill the well with water and offer some regular water till the new divisions are established.

Similar Posts