Blechnum spicant

Blechnum spicant

This evergreen fern has two different types of fronds. The sterile fronds are stiff, leathery, pinnatifid and dark green, forming a loose outward-spreading, flattened rosette that can get to be about 18″ long. As the season progresses, sterile fronds may lie horizontally on the ground. Fertile fronds (16-24” long) are located in an erect vertical fountain in the center of the sterile frond rosette. They are similar to the sterile ones but taller, with much thinner and widely separated leaflets. Fertile fronds turn brown and wither by the end of the summer, leaving the evergreen sterile rosette. What I love most about this fern are the tiddle heads – who need flowers when the fern send up the most intensely red stems with a bright yellow eye.

Pronunciation: BLEK-num SPIK-ant

Species Meaning: Tufted, having spikes

Blechnum spicant is native to Pacific coast of North America.


  • Blechnum spicant
    Blechnum spicant

Cultivation Notes

Best grown in acidic, evenly moist, well-drained soils with plenty of humus in part to full shade.

Propagation Notes

May be divided in spring. Spreads slowly by short creeping rhizomes.

Additional Information

Syn: Struthiopteris spicant

In Our Garden

Plant ID: P21225

Found in Pots,

Waiting to find its forever home in the garden.

We acquired this plant from Bear Valley Nursery.

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Family: Blechnaceae

Genus: Blechnum

Species: spicant

Commonly known as: Hard fern, deer fern

Height: <3ft

Spread: <3ft

Growth Habit:
Water Needs:
Summer - Medium Water
Sun Needs:
Full Shade
Part Shade
Soil Type:
Average Soil
Season of Interest:
Zn 0 to 6 - too cold for me!

Resistant to Deer and Rabbit.

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