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Matteuccia strutiopteris – Ostrich Fern

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Matteuccia strutiopteris – Ostrich Fern

SKU 5000019 Categories , Tags ,
“Easy to grow fern with erect crown and stout, erect rhizome which sends out slender underground runners that form a new plant. Naturally occur in heavy, moist soil but adopt to light, rich soil and prefers constant moisture. Needs partial to full shade but tolerates sun with cool temperatures and adequate moisture. Fiddleheads are edible.” (North Carolina Extension)


Please note: Most pictures represent mature plants. Unless otherwise specified, all of our plants are sold in 4″ pots to make shipping possible and will mature in time.

Learn more about how the process works and how our plants are delivered.

Plant in 4" pot

Additional information


6-Pack, 9-Pack, Single

Common Name





Native Range

Eastern Asia, Eastern North America, Europe


3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Height Range (ft.)

3.00 to 6.00

Spread (ft.)

5.00 to 8.00

Bloom Time


Bloom Description



Full Shade, Part Shade


Medium, Wet



Suggested Use

Naturalize, Rain Garden


Clay Soil, Erosion, Heavy Shade, Rabbits, Wet Soil

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Product Description

Matteuccia Struthiopteris by Dr. John Hilty
Sensitive Fern family (Onocleaceae)

1457 original - Matteuccia strutiopteris - Ostrich Fern

“The preference is light shade or dappled sunlight, wet to moist conditions, and a somewhat acidic soil that is peaty and/or sandy. Average moisture conditions are tolerated if this fern is watered during dry spells. The leaves are delicate and easily damaged. In more heavily shaded areas, Ostrich Fern often fails to produce fertile leaves.” (Hilty)
Faunal Associations: 
“Caterpillars of the Ostrich Fern Borer Moth (Papaipema sp.) bore through the stalks and/or root system of this fern. This rare moth has been found in the New England area of the United States, where the Ostrich fern is more common, although it has not been found in Illinois. At the present time, this moth has not been scientifically described. Another insect, the aphid Amphorophora ampullata, feeds on Ostrich Fern and other ferns (Blackman & Eastop, 2013). Because Ostrich Fern has large leaves and often forms colonies, it can provide substantial protective cover to various kinds of wildlife where it is locally common.” (Hilty)

  1. Ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris) fiddleheads.” By The Cosmonaut – Own work This image was created with darktable., is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 ca,
  2. “Matteuccia struthiopteris” by Vzb83 in the University of Helsinki botanical garden, is licensed by CC BY-SA 3.0
North Carolina Extension plant description: Onoclea Struthiopteris (Ostrich Fern) | North Carolina Extension Gardener Plant Toolbox Accessed 2 Feb. 2022.
John Hilty botany, cultivation, faunal associations:  John Hilty, “Ostrich Fern“, Illinois Wildflowers, the publisher, Copyright 2004-2019. Accessed 29 January 2022
Botanical Illustration: Prof. Dr. Otto Wilhelm Thomé Flora von Deutschland, Österreich und der Schweiz 1885, Gera, Germany, Public Domain,
Type: Fern
Family: Onocleaceae
Native Range: Europe, eastern Asia, eastern North America
Zone: 3 to 7
Height: 3.00 to 6.00 feet
Spread: 5.00 to 8.00 feet
Bloom Time: Non-flowering
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Naturalize, Rain Garden
Tolerate: Rabbit, Heavy Shade, Erosion, Clay Soil, Wet Soil

Information and images compiled by Erik N. Vegeto

Disclaimer Notice:

Creative Commons will not be liable to You or any party on any legal theory for any damages whatsoever, including without limitation any general, special, incidental or consequential damages arising in connection to this license.


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Summer Shipping Concerns

Please expect some delays in shipping during summer months!

Shipping perishable items in the heat of summer can be tricky to say the least. Our goal is to try to get your plants to you in the best shape possible.

This means we may hold off on shipping items during periods of excessively high temperatures to give your new plants the best chance of surviving their journey in good shape.