Another experiment at Harlow Carr this year is placing more ferns right in the flood zone in our new streamside bed. After seeing what has survived our wet winter with the flooding that took place in parts, I’m going back in to other areas to see how much further I can push a fern! This time I am putting one right on its own island next to a rock edge that I built up with stone. During dryer months it wont see much water but could be potentially submerged in storms for good parts of the winter. I am trying this with a Osmunda regalis ‘Purpurascens’. Already its mature, so I’m hoping this helps. Its my hope that these plantings at the waters edge will green up and soften the stone. In addition the idea is to also see if it aids in slowing the storm water down a bit as the sediment builds up around them creating more space to grow into. Though if this specimen does take to its new home, I will have to keep it to a smaller size as they
can grow to a respectable size.
But to my surprise what I didn’t take into account is the awesome shadow that takes place on the stone behind it. I do hope others will be able to see this from afar! This majestic fern has always been one to watch through the seasons at all its stages of growth.
This is just a quick look at some ferns that were planted in some pots for the summer season at Harlow Carr. They did so exceptionally well its encouraged me to try more ferns in pots in the future.
They are in an area of the garden that’s shady and damp and were providing some lower level planting under some Acer palmatum trees in the pots.
I used some lush Polystichum munitum for a deep leathery contrast against some bright green Adiantum fern. The Adiantum is a houseplant species, chosen for its longer fronds and peachy tinge it wont survive outside this winter but will be lifted out very soon! I should mention the lovely Acer was ‘Orange Dream’.
In another pot, Polystichum braunii is planted with some limey green and red stem Athryrium otophorum var. okanum and Adiantum capillus – veneris. Accompanying all the ferns was a Salaginella sp.that really provided a lovely soft cloud cushion of green!
If or when the pots need to be emptied all the ferns will happily find a home in our woodland! But at the moment I cant bare to take them out!