Onoclea sensibilis

Common name: Sensitive Fern

Native plant

Sensitive fern is a large, somewhat coarse deciduous fern that occurs in wet woods and thickets and in moist soils along streams and springs. Grows up to 4' tall, featuring long-stalked, bright green, fronds. Commonly called sensitive fern because the green vegetative fronds are very sensitive to and suffer almost immediate damage from the first fall frost or to drought. Best grown in organically rich, medium moist, well-drained soil. One of the few ferns that can tolerate full sun conditions if conditions are wet enough. Although native to marshy areas, it grows quite well in average garden soil as long as it is not allowed to dry out. Spreads by both creeping rhizomes and spores, so it can be quite assertive with the right growing conditions.

Also available in quarts.


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Pricing information for
Per unit for pint growing method $5.50
Flats $70

Plant Details

Plant type


Soil type

Mesic, Moist Mesic

Light exposure

Full Sun, Partial Sun, Shade



Growth form


General information

Mature height
1 Feet
Mature width
1 Feet
Max height
1 Feet
Max width
1 Feet
Growth rate
Fall color

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