Table Fern in the Garden

Unless you’re from a more tropical climate, you probably aren’t used to growing table ferns (Pteris) outdoors in the garden. About 30 years ago, I began a mission to collect and evaluate winter hardy forms of a number of species in a genus that’s almost exclusively tropical. Below is our patch of Pteris cretica ‘Ping Wu’ in the garden in mid-February. Because our winter temperature hasn’t dropped below 18 degrees F, it’s remained evergreen so far. When temperatures drop much below 15 F, it goes deciduous. This is a superb Hans Hansen spore collection from Sichuan, China at 3,500′ elevation near Ping Wu.

Pteris cretica ‘Ping Wu’

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