Polystichum acrostichoides

Christmas Fern

Tips for Homeowners:

The evergreen foliage of this fern provide Winter Interest and allow it to serve as a lovely and useful Accent for a Shade Garden.  In appropriate sites, Polystichum acrostichoides matures into a verdant and soothing Groundcover, Border or Mass.  This fern provides Erosion Control and serves as a valuable component of Deer Resistant Plantings, Low Maintenance Plantings, Perennial Borders, Rock Gardens, Water-Wise Landscapes and Wildlife Gardens.

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  • Mounding perennial fern with lustrous evergreen arching fronds.
  • Foliage is once compound with each impressive frond consisting of many pairs of serrate pinnae.
  • In early spring slender silvery fiddleheads emerge from the loose tufts of old foliage.
  • Old leaves collapse into the leaf litter as new fronds unfurl from the fiddleheads.
  • Thrives in moist sites and adapts to loamy soils in shade or part shade.

Height: 1-2 ft
Spread: 1-2 feet
Spacing: 2-3 ft

Zone: 3-9
Color: Non-Flowering

Characteristics & Attributes


  • Winter interest
  • Fast Growing
  • Mass Planting
  • Low Maintenance
  • Native
  • Evergreen
  • Drought Tolerant

Critter Resistance:

  • Deer Resistant


  • Partial Sun
  • Shade/ Part Shade

Foliage Color:

  • Green


  • Clump forming
  • Creeping/Ground Cover

Season of Interest (Foliage):

  • Winter
  • Spring
  • Fall
  • Summer

Soil Moisture:

  • Average Water
  • Moist, Well-Drained
  • Dry Soil

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