Athyrium niponicum ‘Pictum’ – The best color is developed on this fern when it is placed in light shade, because too much sun washes out the color. Throughout the summer, the fresh fronds that are grown by the Japanese painted fern offer some extra enjoyment.


The Japanese painted fern needs well-drained, compostrich soil. A mix of 75% peat and 25% perlite works well but straight peat, coco-peat or a combination of both is possible. This is necessary because fern roots need plenty of air in the substrate to create a good root system. Excess water must also be able to drain away easily. The initial EC of the mix:0.5- 0.8 (for example a standard pre-mix) PH : 5.0-6.0. Only water the plant if it’s really dry. Rainwater is preferred.

The green leafage of this plant looks really nice in a forest-like environment.

This fern needs a well-drained, compost-rich soil and flourishes where moisture and humidity abound. The plant grows best in part- to full shade and the best frond color results in light shade. In the south, a few hours of morning sun will bring out the high colors of this fern. In the north, the ferns can be exposed to more morning sun without being burned. The colors are even more intense in spring or when the plant is exposed to cooler temperatures.

Helleborus and hosta’s, astilbe and dicentra combine beautifully with this fern.

Add 2-3 inches of compost or peat moss to the beds each spring or fall. The fern’s colorful foliage should be vibrant from early spring until frost, when it will go dormant and reemerge with its excellent foliage the next spring. This plant is clump-forming and it can easy form great colonies if it’s happy. This plant is a great choice for shady borders, beds, underplanting of shrubs, cottage gardens, woodlands or along streams, ponds or water gardens. With its tricolored fronds, this is one of the most popular ferns in cultivation today. The spectacular blade is triangular, bipinnate to bipinnate-pinnatifid, with a burgundy rachis and pinna midribs and zones of gray and darker green on the pinnae.

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Richard Hayward

The plant hunter

Richard Hayward, a famous British fern collector, has enjoyed ferns ever since he encountered them as a boy scout in South Wales and took them to London as souvenirs. After his retirement he owned a small fern farm in North Wales. He still exchanges spores and plants of rare species with other fern enthusiasts.

"I love ferns because of their diversity in shape, foliage, colour and beauty and their enormous urge to survive."



Polystichum yunnanense – This fern grows wonderfully without significant attention, even under dry conditions for a while. This rare fern asks to be discovered by more


Athyrium otophorum ‘Okanum’ – This lovely deer-resistant evergreen fern is so unique that it is actually recognizable from a distance. Anyone that observes Wine and Lime


Dryopteris sieboldii – This is a most unusual fern with magnificent and oddly shaped fronds that mark it out as quite distinct from any other Dryopteris.


Dryopteris sichotensis – A large Asian forest fern with dark scales and strong, flat growing fronds. Occurs in the undergrowth of forests, in the highlands on


Lastreopsis microsora – This fern has been used for years as bedding plant in southern California, the creeping rhizome is moderately slow-growing and easy to control.


Dryopteris koidzumiana – This unique fern loves warmth, so patience is required for it to start growing. But once it does, new fronds emerge with their