Virginia chain fern
Woodwardia virginica
Blechnaceae


Landscape Uses:

Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations. Also an accent groundcover in shady, wet areas.

Ecological Restoration Notes:

Availability:
Grown by a few native plant nurseries in central and northern Florida.
Description:
Medium to large herbaceous fern.
Height:
Typically 2-4 feet in height. Spreading from underground stems (rhizomes) and forming patches.
Growth Rate:
Moderate.
Range:
Eastern and central United States west to Texas and south to Miami-Dade and Collier counties.
Habitats:
Swamps, marshes and wet hammocks.
Soils:
Seasonally wet to moist, moderately well-drained to poorly-drained organic soils.
Nutritional Requirements:
Moderate; can grow in nutrient poor soils, but needs some organic content to thrive.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.
Drought Tolerance:
Low; requires moist to wet soils and is intolerant of long periods of drought.
Light Requirements:
Light shade.
Flower Color:
N/A.
Flower Characteristics:
There are no flowers; the plants reproduce by spores.
Flowering Season:
Summer-fall.
Fruit:
Inconspicuous spores.
Wildlife and Ecology:
Horticultural Notes:
Can be grown from division, and from spores with difficulty.
Comments:


Bruce Holst
Sarasota County, Florida, November 2009
Susan Trammell
Shirley Denton