When should I put ferns outside?

Answered by Phillip Nicastro

The optimal time for planting ferns outside depends on various factors such as the hardiness of the fern species and the climate in your region. Generally, ferns can be planted throughout the year, but there are certain times that are more favorable for their successful establishment and growth.

1. Consider the hardiness of the fern: Different fern species have varying levels of hardiness. Some ferns can tolerate cold temperatures and frost, while others are more sensitive and require milder conditions. It’s important to know the specific requirements of the fern species you have before determining the best time to plant them outside.

2. Assess your local climate: Understanding the climate in your region is crucial in determining the optimal time for planting ferns. If you live in an area with hot summers, it’s generally recommended to plant ferns in the fall. This allows them to establish their root systems before the heat of summer arrives. On the other hand, if you reside in a region with harsh winters, it’s advisable to wait until spring to plant your ferns, as they may not survive the cold temperatures and frost.

3. Fall planting for frost-hardy ferns: If you have fern species that are known to tolerate frost and cold temperatures, planting them in the fall can be advantageous. The cooler temperatures and moist soil during this time of year provide favorable conditions for the ferns to establish their roots. This early establishment will help them become more resilient and better prepared for the following summer.

4. Spring planting for cold-sensitive ferns: For fern species that are more sensitive to cold temperatures or frost, it’s generally safer to wait until spring to plant them outside. This allows them to avoid potential winter damage and gives them a fresh start in the warmer months. By planting in spring, the ferns have the entire growing season ahead of them to establish and thrive.

5. Observations and personal experiences: It’s always helpful to observe the natural growth patterns of ferns in your area or seek advice from local gardeners or horticulturists. They may have insights into the specific requirements and optimal planting times for ferns in your region. Additionally, sharing personal experiences can provide valuable information to others who may have similar questions or concerns.

While ferns can be planted throughout the year, the ideal time for planting outside depends on the hardiness of the fern species and the climate in your region. Fall is generally recommended for frost-hardy ferns and regions with hot summers, while spring is preferred for cold-sensitive ferns and regions with harsh winters. By considering these factors and seeking local advice, you can ensure the successful establishment and growth of your ferns.