Link to Missouri Botanical Garden Plant Finder Link to Five Springs Farm Plant Information Sheet (pdf)
Native to southeast Ohio Deer-resistant
Native to eastern United States Likes full sun
Native to North America Likes shade
Edible for humans Evergreen or wintergreen
Pollinator-friendly plant Suitable for wet sites

Please also note: This is only and ever a partial list. We always have plants at the nursery that just came in, or that we only have one or a few specimens of; come by to see all of what's available!

Note: All of these ferns are highly deer-resistant.


Adiantum pedatum - maidenhair fern: mum pot: $8

A delicate-looking but deceptively tough fern, a great companion for the shade flower bed. Will slowly spread.

Athyrium asplenioides - southern lady fern: mum pot: $8

A finely-cut fern that can grow fairly large with good conditions. Will slowly spread in a clump.

Azolla cristata - mosquito fern: baggie: $4

A tiny, moss-like aquatic plant that floats on the surface of water. Will only survive mild winters, but can spread quite a bit during a summer. Turns red in sun. This plant can be used in rice paddies as a green fertilizer source, as bacteria within the plant fix nitrogen. The name Azolla caroliniana is the one usually used for this species, but A. cristata is the correct name. Note: The MoBot link is for a different, but very similar, species.

Botrypus virginianus - rattlesnake fern: mum pot: $8

NOTE: Not ready until midsummer.
This relative of the grape fern, Sceptridium dissectum, below, also only sends up one frond per year, but on a normal annual deciduous cycle. In good soil and light shade or filtered sun, this primitive fern can grow to two feet tall, but ten inches is more typical. It will tolerate most soils.

Cystopteris protrusa - fragile fern: 4-inch: $5 or mum pot: $8

A small spring ephemeral fern that will grow in almost any shaded soil. The first, sterile fronds die back by early summer, while the slightly longer sterile fronds may last through the season, but are sparse.

Cystopteris tennesseensis - Shaver's bladder fern: 4-inch: $5

A small fern closely related to the fragile fern, above, but normally growing on limestone rock. We only have a very few of these.

Deparia acrostichoides - silvery glade fern: mum pot: $8

A medium to large fern that does well in the shade garden. Will slowly spread to fill an area. Also known as Athyrium thelypterioides.

Dryopteris marginalis - marginal wood fern: mum pot: $10

Probably the most beautiful of the native wood ferns. Mature plants often have a bluish cast to them, and the sori turn a beautiful violet just before ripening.

Equisetum arvense - field horsetail: mum pot: $5

A low-growing, feathery-looking plant that spreads aggressively, but will mix with other wildflowers or ferns. Very attractive, prefers moist soils.

Equisetum fluviatile - water horsetail: mum pot: $8

This is the only truly aquatic horsetail. It can be grown in moist soil but prefers to grow in standing (not flowing) water. It's branched, but the branching is variable.

Equisetum hyemale ssp. affine - scouring rush: mum pot: $5

A stiffly-erect, dark green, evergreen plant that resembles a rush. Loves sandy soils. Plant only where it can be contained!

Equisetum scirpoides - dwarf scouring rush: mum pot: $10

This horsetail looks like a dwarf version of a scouring rush, with rather twisted stems. It must have a fairly wet soil.

Equisetum variegatum - variegated scouring rush: mum pot: $10

This horsetail looks like a smaller version of Equisetum hyemale, above. It likes a wet soil but will do well in a regular garden soil that doesn't dry out excessively.

Homalosorus pycnocarpos - narrow glade fern: mum pot: $8

A beautiful fern of simple structure, sometimes called Tennessee ostrich fern. Will slowly spread to fill an area. With enough moisture, will tolerate high light levels. Also known as Diplazium pycnocarpon.

Lycopodiella inundata - marsh clubmoss: mum pot: $12

An intriguing running clubmoss that needs a wet spot. It looks like a miniature of the foxtail clubmoss, above. Ready in late spring 2017.

Matteuccia struthiopteris - ostrich fern: mum pot: $8, 3 gallon: $17

A large fern with edible fiddleheads (must be thoroughly cooked). Has vase-like crowns. Will spread to fill in an area by underground stolons. Will do well in sun if not too hot.

Onoclea sensibilis - sensitive fern: mum pot: $6, 3 gallon: $12

A coarse fern that thrives in full sun with some moisture. Tough and versatile; spreads easily.

Osmunda spectabilis - royal fern: mum pot: $12

This large fern has fronds that resemble locust leaves. Like the cinnamon fern, it appreciates a lot of moisture, and can grow six feet tall. We only have a few of these.

Osmundastrum cinnamomeum - cinnamon fern: mum pot: $8

A large fern that will grow satisfactorily in the shade in garden soil, but will become spectacular in full sun or partial shade with wet feet year-round. Can grow six feet tall under those circumstances.

Parathelypteris noveboracensis - New York fern: mum pot: $8

An excellent fern to use as a groundcover in partial shade. Good for moderate slopes.

Phegopteris hexagonoptera - broad beech fern: mum pot: $8

The best ground-cover fern for a shade flower garden. Triangular cut fronds. Easy to grow.

Polystichum acrostichoides - Christmas fern: mum pot: $7

The hardiest and most versatile of native ferns. Evergreen. Will tolerate high light levels in good soil.

Pteridium aquilinum - bracken: 3 gallon: $12

The largest of our native ferns. Will form a canopy ground cover 1-3 feet above ground level. Can be very aggressive and needs room. Will grow happily in full sun. Plant it only where you can positively control it.

Pteridium pseudocaudatum - tailed bracken: mum pot: $17

NOTE: Not ready until midsummer.
Similar to regular bracken, but with fewer frond divisions, pinnae and pinnules ending in "tails." Will grow happily in full sun.

Woodwardia virginia - chain fern: mum pot: $10

A beautiful fern that resembles the cinnamon fern, but is a fast creeper rather than growing from a crown. This fern has the interesting property that it can grow happily in the nastiest bog. Will grow in water or in ordinary garden soil. It is a strong grower.