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Osmunda regalis (Royal fern)
Wasowski, Sally and Andy

Osmunda regalis

Osmunda regalis L.

Royal fern

Osmundaceae (Royal Fern Family)

Synonym(s):

USDA Symbol: osre

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N), SPM (N)

The form and texture of this fern are unique. The fronds are cut twice into large rounded leaflets, resulting in foliage that resembles that of the pea family. Delicate, bright green fronds, often with a silvery cast, are crowned with golden, fruiting pinnae on wine-colored petioles. Fronds are 2-5 ft. in height and often 18 in. in width. Rootstock elevated up to 6 inches above the soil surface, with black roots extending deep.

 

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb , Fern
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf: Dark Green
Fruit:
Size Class: 3-6 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Not Applicable
Bloom Notes: Not a flowering plant. Reproduces by spores.

Distribution

USA: AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , TN , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: NB , NL , NS , PE
Native Distribution: Nf. to Ont., s. to FL & TX. North America, South America, and western Eurasia. Zones 5 to 11.
Native Habitat: Swamps; marshes; stream banks; moist depressions in savannas & prairies

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Wet
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
Soil Description: Various wet soils. Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay, Limestone-based
Conditions Comments: Tolerates year-round shallow water.

Benefit

Use Ornamental: An accent fern for the water garden, bog, or pond area
Use Other: Bristly crown of rootstock a source of osmunda fiber, a potting medium for orchids.
Interesting Foliage: yes

Propagation

Propagation Material: Root Division
Description: Propagate by spores or rhizome division.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

Mr. Smarty Plants says

Native plants to stop pond bank erosion
June 04, 2008
I recently purchased a home with a small pond in which a nearby stream daylights. The former owner placed large field stone around the pond and the small stream; however, the area around the pond and...
view the full question and answer

From the National Suppliers Directory

According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:

Edge of the Woods Native Plant Nursery - Orefield, PA
Amandas Garden - Springwater, NY
Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation Native Plant Nursery - Sanibel, FL
American Native Nursery - Quakertown, PA
Prairie Nursery - Westfield, WI

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:

Delaware Nature Society - Hockessin, DE
Longwood Gardens - Newark, DE
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE
* Available Online from Wildflower Center Store

Bibliography

Bibref 1620 - Gardening with Native Plants of the South (Reprint Edition) (2009) Wasowski, S. with A. Wasowski
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
* The Midwestern Native Garden: Native Alternatives to Nonnative Flowers and Plants An Illustrated Guide (2011) Adelman, Charlotte and Schwartz, Bernard L.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Additional resources

USDA: Find Osmunda regalis in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Osmunda regalis in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Osmunda regalis

Metadata

Record Last Modified: 2013-09-09
Research By: TWC Staff

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