The bold evergreen leaves of holly fern are great for creating a textural contrast in the garden. This shade loving fern has bold and bright matte-green leaves that give a fresh look throughout the spring and summer. Its leathery foliage catches the eye especially when combined with fine textured ferns. The lighter green of this fern help make dark shady areas seem a little brighter. Try combinations with other shade lovers, such as Pulmonaria, Epimedium or Brunnera.
Plant Type: fern
Foliage Type: evergreen
Plant Height: 1 ft. 6 in. (0.46 meters)
Plant Width/Spread: 2 ft. 0 in. (0.61 meters)
Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 10
Sun/Light Exposure: light, open, dappled, or deep shade
Water Requirements: regular watering
Resistant to: deer
Colors & Combos
Great Color Contrasts: silver, bronze, burgundy
Great Color Partners: dark green, chartreuse
- Culture Notes
- Holly ferns are easy to grow and thrive in all types of shade. They tolerate morning sun, but too much sun or short periods of hot afternoon sun can yellow and burn the foliage. Provide regular water during dry weather and plant in a rich moist or well-drained soil with plenty of compost. This evergreen fern will look weathered by late winter and should be cut to the ground in January or February to make way for the fresh foliage of spring.