• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Polystichum setiferum

Soft shield fern

AGM plants

AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

  • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
  • Available to buy
  • Of good constitution
  • Essentially stable in form & colour
  • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases
Soft shield fern

© � RHS 1999

  • Other common names Soft shield fern

  • Synonyms Polystichum setiferum angulare
    Polystichum setiferum bulbosum

  • Genus Polystichum are mostly evergreen or semi-evergreen ferns, with short stout rhizomes and pinnately divided fronds in neat shuttlecock-like rosettes

  • Family Dryopteridaceae / Dryopteridaceae

  • Species P. setiferum is a tufted evergreen fern to 1.2m in height, with rosettes of soft textured, lance-shaped mid-green fronds, the stalks with prominent orange-brown scales

  • Plant range SW & C Europe

Characteristics

  • Foliage Evergreen

  • Habit Tufted

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)
    Old hardiness ratings

    While we update our systems with the new hardiness ratings you may still see old hardiness ratings in your search results. These are denoted as 'Old'.

    • H1 - Requires heated glass
    • H2 - Requires unheated glass
    • H3 - Hardy outside in some regions of the UK
    • H4 - Hardy throughout the UK
    • H1 + H3 - Requires heated glass but may be grown outside in summer

    For full details of the hardiness ratings see

    see more

    H7

Colour

Sunlight

  • Full Shade

  • Partial Shade

  • Aspect South-facing or North-facing or West-facing or East-facing

  • Exposure Exposed or Sheltered

Soil

  • Chalk

    Loam

  • Chalk

    Chalk

  • Chalk

    Sand

  • Chalk

    Clay

  • MoistureMoist but well-drained

  • SoilLoam, Chalk, Sand, Clay

  • pHAcid, Neutral, Alkaline

Size

  • Ultimate height

    1-1.5 metres

  • Ultimate spread

    0.5-1 metres

  • Time to ultimate height

    5-10 years

How to grow

Cultivation Easy to grow in most cool, fertile, moist, humus-rich, shaded soils. Protect crowns from excessive winter wet

Propagation Propagate by sowing spores as soon as ripe, division of rhizomes in spring or by bulbils in autumn

Suggested planting locations and garden types Flower borders and beds Low Maintenance Underplanting of Roses and Shrubs Cottage & Informal Garden Wildflower meadow

How to care

Pruning Dead or damaged fronds may be removed as necessary

Pests Generally pest free outdoors

Diseases Generally disease free

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