Tree Fern

(Question)

Saw a show from the UK “Escape to the Country” They had a magnificent row of very tall tree ferns. Can we grow them here or in PEI? Many thanks for your helpl

 

(Answer)

 

If only we could grow those magnificent tree ferns here!  I would be the first to put one in my garden, but no, sadly Tree Ferns; Dicksonia and Cyathea can handle only a very light frost and will perish with any sustained temperatures under -6 Celsius.  These amazing trees grow naturally in tropical and subtropical rainforests such as Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.  They are cultivated in Britain as well as you saw on your show, but here in Canada we will have to be content to see them in conservatories such as Allan Gardens here in Toronto.  Apart from their beauty, you might be interested to know that Tree ferns do not have a “bark” as other trees and shrubs do, instead the “trunk” of the tree, which can reach a height of up to 80’ is made up of modified roots that grow upward and support the fern top of the tree.

Don’t be put off growing all ferns though, we have a wide variety of ferns that are hardy and some that are native to our area.  I am attaching a link to a site with more information about Hardy ferns.  I hope you find a place in your garden for one or two of them.

 

Hardy Garden Ferns: A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide