Family: Dryopteridaceae

Scientific Name: Dryopteris erythrosora

Common Name: Japanese Shield Fern, Shaggy Shield Fern, Autumn Fern


Autumn Fern ( Dryopteris erythrosora) is a dynamic fern changing foliage color in the spring and the fall.

Plant TypeFerns - Hardy
Hardiness Zone5(6)-8(9)
Sunlightpartial to full shade, tolerating short periods of direct sun
Moisturemoist, once establish somewhat drought tolerant
Soil & Sitehumus rich, moist
FlowersThe sori are bright red on the fertie frond.
LeavesThe young fronds are glossy, coppery pink and the mature fronds are deep glossy green. The fronds are broad, triangular and bipinnate. Cold weather initiates the russet red fall color.
Stemsshort rhizomes
DimensionsReaches 18-36 inches tall with a spread of 18-24".
Propagationspores or division
Misc FactsThe genus name Dryopteris (Greek) means "oak-fern". The fern is found many times growing in Oak forests. The species name felis-mas means male fern, probably because of its vigorous growth. For centuries an extract of this fern was used to control tapeworms. The chemicals filicin and filmarone found in the oil are toxic to the worms
Notes & Reference#228-Encyclopedia of Garden Ferns (Sue Olsen)
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