Dwarf Southern Wood Fern

Availability: Out of stock

The Dwarf Southern Wood Fern (Thelypteris ovata var. lindheimeri) also known as Dwarf River Fern, is a semi-evergreen, perennial Fern. Your Dwarf Southern Wood Fern features medium-green fronds that emanate out in a haphazard yet graceful, arching nature.

Unlike the common Ferns that you see with their neatly symmetrical fronds growing out from a central core, Dwarf Southern's fronds grow this way and that for a uniquely charming, ruffled effect in the garden setting! Spreading wide up to 6 feet at maturity, these naturalizing Ferns grow just 2-3 feet in height.

The bright green fronds are sure to add warmth and texture to your garden! As summer fades, Dwarf Southern Wood Fern takes on bronze tones for an additional splash of color in your autumn landscape. Hardy perennial Ferns throughout USDA planting zones 6 to 10, these Southern Wood Fern cultivars retain their Southeastern US native hardiness!

Planting and Application:

The Dwarf Wood Fern has a lacy, fine-textured ornamental nature that would make it a perfect addition to your shady garden beds as a vibrant border. It would also do great as an en masse groundcover to fill in around your trees and shrubs! Line gardens and landscaping beds with a lacy green fringe, or give a sculpture, garden art, or gazebo a skirting of elegant greenery!

Wood Ferns grow in shaded crevices of rocky ledges and ravines, so you can rest assured they'd thrive in your Rock Gardens and formal urban lots both benefit from a burst of fresh green. Likewise, they handle moisture as well! Plant around water features, in Rain Gardens, and that shady side of the house where the HVAC unit drains and only moss seems to grow!

Perfect for radiant skirting around the shade of large leggy shrubs and gazebos, patios provide a soft finishing touch. Plant en masse for a vibrant swath of enchanting greenery year-round. Great in containers to provide greenery and ornamental filler, as well as, throughout the garden beds and borders.

  • Soft Green Symmetrical Fronds
  • Lacy Fringy Fine-Textured Look
  • Bronzy Fall Color
  • Spreading & Naturalizing Form
  • Winter Hardy Semi-Evergreen
  • Naturalizing Plant, Containers, Edging & En Masse

#ProPlantTips for Care:

Ferns are easy to maintain and incredibly low maintenance, but also disease and pest-free! They handle full shade in warmer climates and partial shade/afternoon shade in cooler areas. These are incredibly tolerant, resilient, and adaptable plants that we're sure will make themselves right at home in your landscape.

Typically enjoying consistent moisture and humidity for the healthiest plants possible. Doing best in rich humus that is well-drained, Marginal Ferns even tolerate rocky soil as long as it has plenty of organic matter. Add Nature Hills Root Booster during planting, because the symbiotic ingredients work non-stop over the life of the plant.

Ferns can even handle some cold temperatures. Deer tend to leave it alone and it's generally a tough little Fern that adds definition and color to your yard. A generous layer of mulch helps retain soil moisture as well as insulate the root system from heat and chill. These clumps may be divided in spring, and enjoy spreading, they're easily controlled and cared for!

  • Partial Shade & Full Shade Tolerant
  • Moderate to High Moisture - Some Tolerance To Drought
  • Any Organically-Rich Well-Drained Soil
  • Can Remain Semi-Evergreen/Evergreen in Mild Winters
  • Deer Resistant & Low-Maintenance

If you're looking for a Fern with a bit more to offer than the typical Fern attributes, the Dwarf Southern Wood Fern is a terrific choice. It's even easy to propagate so an investment in just one can eventually take care of a larger area. Dwarf Southern Wood Fern is a terrific, ornamental plant with a lot to offer for your yard this year! Order at NatureHills.com today!

Buying Options for Plants

Nature Hills sells a large variety of plants with several options available. Plants are offered in both potted containers and as dormant bare root without soil. Here is a helpful resource to understand your options as you create a beautiful landscape with help from Nature Hills.

Ever wonder what a larger plant will mean for your landscape? Container Sizes are really all about the age of the plant!

Seasonally, Nature Hills offers hand selected, high quality bare root trees, shrubs and perennials. Bare root plants are sold by height from the top of the root system to the top of the plant. Plants may be taller than the height minimums.

  • Popular sizes of select trees are 1 foot, 2 feet, 3 feet, etc.
  • Popular sizes of select bare root plants is 1 foot, 18 inches, etc.

Nature Hills Container Size by Volume

Keep in mind, specific varieties and different growing conditions can affect the rate at which plants grow. Variations in size may occur.

Young Plants to 18 Months
Size Volume
2"x2"x3" Ranges from .18 to .21 dry quarts / .198 to .23 dry liters in volume
4.5" Container Equal to .65 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
Sprinter Pot Equal to .63 dry quart / .69 dry liter in volume
4" Container Ranges from .31 to .87 / .35 to .96 dry liter in volume
6" Container Equal to 1.4 dry quarts / 1.59 dry liters in volume
1 Quart Equal to 1 dry quart / 1.1 dry liter in volume
5.5" Container Equal to 1.89 of a dry quart / 2.08 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x5" Ranges from .8 to 1.1 dry quarts / .88 to 1.2 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x6" Ranges from 1.0 to 1.3 dry quarts / 1.1 to 1.41 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x9" Ranges from 1.1 to 2.1 dry quarts / 1.2 to 2.3 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x10" Ranges from 1.7 to 2.3 dry quart / 1.87 to 2.53 dry liters in volume
Plants 18 Months - 2.5 Years Old
Size Volume
2 Quart Equal to 2 dry quarts / 2.2 dry liters in volume
#1 Container Ranges from 2.26 to 3.73 dry quarts / 2.49 to 4.11 dry liters in volume
5"x5"x12" Equal to 3.5 to 4.3 dry quarts / 3.85 to 4.74 dry liters in volume
Plants 2 - 4 Years Old
Size Volume
#2 Container Ranges from 1.19 to 1.76 dry gallons / 5.24 to 7.75 dry liters in volume
#3 Container Ranges from 2.32 to 2.76 dry gallons / 10.22 to 12.16 dry liters in volume
Plants 3 - 5 Years Old
Size Volume
#5 Container Ranges from 2.92 to 4.62 dry gallons / 12.86 to 20.35 dry liters in volume
#6 Container Ranges from 5.25 to 6.01 dry gallons / 23.12 to 26.42 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

About Plant Sentry™

Plant Sentry is designed to protect both consumers and the nursery trade from invasive plant pests and diseases. Sites that display the Plant Sentry protection badge are protected from consumers buying and nurseries shipping material carrying invasive pests and diseases.

This proprietary eCommerce software prevents the shipment of a restricted plant to each state. The Plant Sentry system includes a shipment certification program. The Plant Sentry Compliance Officer works closely with NatureHills.com and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

Click Here to learn more

Plant Sentry


To obtain a more accurate shipment time-frame, simply enter your zip code in the “Find Your Growing Zone” box to the right. Our plants are grown all over the country and lead time on items may be different because of this. Once your order is placed, you will also receive the specific shipment time-frame information as part of your order confirmation. Once an item ships, you will receive shipment notification and tracking numbers, so you can follow along while your plant travels to your doorstep. We use FedEx, UPS, or USPS at our discretion.

Due to winter weather we have put a hold on shipping to the areas shown below in grey. You can still order now and we will ship the plant to you during an appropriate time for your zone.

*If you have found your zone already, it will be highlighted in the table below.
Color Zone Times
3 Spring 2019
4 Now
5 Now
6 Now
7 Now
8 Now
9 Now
10 Now
11 Now

Shipping Rates

At Nature Hills we handle, package and ship the products you order with the utmost care to ensure healthy delivery. Shipping and handling charges are calculated based on the tables below. Please note that some items include an additional handling surcharge, these will be noted on the item's product page.

From To S&H
0 - 19.99 24.99
20 - 49.99 29.99
50 - 69.99 34.99
70 - 99.99 39.99
100 - 129.99 44.99
130 - 149.99 48.99
150 - 150+ Approx 28%

Click here to see our full rates


Dwarf Southern Wood Fern Is Suited to Grow in Zones 6-10
Growing Zones 6-10
More Information
Brand Nature Hills' Choice
Botanical Name Thelypteris ovata var. lindheimeri
Type Perennial
Mature Height 2 - 3 feet
Mature Spread 3 - 6 feet
Sun Exposure Full Shade, Partial Shade
Soil Well Drained
Moisture Moderate to High - Some Drought Tolerance
Growth Rate Medium
Foliage Green
Pollinator Friendly No
Pruning Time Early Spring