Cinnamon fern

Osmunda cinnamomea For a vertical accent in the shade garden, cinnamon fern is a softly elegant, even statuesque, choice. Fiddleheads of this woodland native emerge tawny and hairy in the spring. They unfurl into medium green 2-4 foot fronds that are bipinnate. Their fertile fronds give them their name, arising from the center of each clump, so thickly covered with spore capsules that they show no green. Their cinnamon brown color suggests cinnamon sticks. In fall, fronds turn yellow. Wonderfully long-lived, cinnamon ferns will not tolerate prolonged dry soil but tolerant some drought once established. Sow spores as soon as they mature. -Ellen Nibali, Special to The Baltimore Sun
Photo by Ellen Nibali, Special to The Baltimore Sun
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