Royal Fern

As low as $39.59 was $59.99
Availability: In stock

Turn any waste area, soggy patch, or dark, gloomy area of your landscape into a verdant imperial garden with a Royal Fern! The Royal Fern (Osmunda regalis) is an upright, deciduous Fern that brings resilience and beauty to tougher locations in the landscape, not to mention a great many designer qualities as well!

Emerging pinkish in the early spring, the cut-leaf fronds quickly turn green, as foliage fills an area with gorgeous hues and cool color saturation. A native Fern, they inhabit a wide range of climates and conditions throughout the US but mostly the Northwestern States.

The Royal Fern is a lovely deciduous perennial. The broad fronds have large, well-separated pinnae (leaflets) which give this Fern a lacy, ethereal appearance.

The foliage produces spore-producing, blooming structures called 'sori', that grow as brown, tassel-like clusters at the tips of the fronds. Thus giving rise to its common name the Flowering Fern. Rising above the greenery like curious spires, these contrasting structures also take on a yellow to cinnamon-brown color in autumn.

The delicate fronds too, typically turn yellow to cinnamon-brown in autumn, before dying back to the ground each winter. Rarely damaged by deer, this naturalizing Fern fills the shade garden void. Hardy throughout USDA planting zones 3 to 9, these perennial plants grow 2-3 feet in height and width.

Planting and Application:

Royal Ferns typically grow in dense clumps, but with constant moisture can reach 6' in height in optimal conditions. Occurring in nature on moist bluffs, cascading over misty ledges and waving along streams, and sometimes growing in the water! It thrives even in deep shade and in containers as a focal point planting!

Need protection for wildlife? This large Fern occasionally forms sizable colonies that provide cover for wildlife, especially when in higher moisture locations. Not become damaged by woodland creatures either! Royal Fern is highly resistant to damage from browsing animals.

And if you are looking for a plant that can thrive in wet areas, along ponds, streams, and that tricky area where the gutters or HVAC systems drain, these are natural options! Water gardens, Rain Gardens, or even bogs, the Royal Fern is an excellent choice.

You can expect Royal Fern to grow well in shady borders, magical woodland gardens, wild swales, and native plantings too. Tolerating year-round shallow water! Standing mighty among Hosta and Bleeding Hearts, Royal Fern spruces up other shade-loving perennials.

While a single specimen can look extraordinary in small space gardens...this plant truly shines in a massed planting. Space them 18-24 inches apart and they'll grow together in a magnificent groundcover. It's no wonder why this plant won an Award of Garden Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society!

  • Award-Winning Fern
  • Airy Delicate Foliage
  • Works In Wetlands, Rain Gardens & Along Water Features
  • Clump-Forming With Unique 'Blooms'
  • Cinnamon-Brown Fall Color
  • Spreading Groundcover, Tall Backdrops & Accents, Containers & Specimens

#ProPlantTips for Care:

Growing in tight, compact clumps, be sure to give these easy-to-grow Ferns room to grow to their potential height and spread when happy! Royal Fern may become quite sizable if planted in rich moist soil and provided enough shade. Add Nature Hills Root Booster during planting, because the symbiotic ingredients work non-stop over the life of the plant to support each of the tiny feeder roots in their quest for nutrients and moisture.

Preferring consistently moist soil that is acidic, Royal Fern does even better in rich organic matter. Even thriving in clay! Royal Fern can tolerate standing water at times as long as it is not stagnant pools. Be sure to improve the drainage of your soil before planting and add humus and compost, plus amendments that will increase the acidic soil qualities.

These are shade-loving plants and will not do well in full sun. Preferring dappled sites and full shade only. Tolerating part sun locations only if they have nearly constant access to water. A 3-4 inch deep layer of wood chip mulch over the root systems to keep them cool and moist. Never allow mulch to rest directly against the burgundy stems...pull it back for proper air circulation.

Prune in early spring to trim off any winter damage and divide every 3-5 years to keep the clumps growing vigorously. Easy care and requiring very little maintenance, Royal Fern are especially great for out-of-the-way areas to add that lush greenery you can plant and forget about!

  • Shade & Partial Shade Tolerant
  • Any Well-Drained Acidic Rich Soil
  • Prefers Moist to Wet Areas - Works in Standing Water, Boggy Soil
  • Cold & Heat Tolerant
  • Widely Adaptable Deciduous Fern
  • Low Maintenance & Deer Rarely Damage It

Improve your shade gardens with the imperial Royal Fern greenery! You'll wonder why you waited so long to create a garden space fit for fairy royalty! Order your own hardy native Royal Fern from Nature Hills Nursery 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 and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

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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
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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


Royal Fern Is Suited to Grow in Zones 3-9
Growing Zones 3-9
More Information
Brand Nature Hills' Choice
Botanical Name Osmunda regalis
Type Perennial
Mature Height 2 - 3 feet
Mature Spread 2 - 3 feet
Sun Exposure Full Shade, Partial Shade
Soil Well Drained
Moisture Moderate to High & Standing Water
Growth Rate Medium
Flower Color Cinnamon Brown 'Flowers'
Foliage Color Green
Fall Color Red
Pollinator Friendly No
Pruning Time Early Spring