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Polystichum Tsussimense, also called Korean Rock Fern and Tsushima Holly Fern, has been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit because of its excellent qualities. This low-growing evergreen holly fern is quite hardy and has a variety of garden uses.
Polystichum Tsussimense is named after the Japanese island of Tsushima, but it can be found growing across much of Asia as far west as India. It grows in a variety of conditions, from the subtropics to high in the Himalayas. This evergreen fern has finely cut dark green fronds with delicate black veins and black stems. New leaves are purplish when they emerge in the spring before changing to green.
Hardy through the UK and northern Europe, Korean Rock Fern will reach a full height and spread of 10 to 50 cm over 5 to 10 years. The only pruning that is required is the removal of dead or damaged stems. Clumps can be divided every 5 years in early spring.
Tsushima Holly Fern will thrive in a shady spot in your garden, in moist, well-drained soil. Make sure that you plant it with plenty of organic matter such as leaf mould. It will be happy in an exposed or sheltered location with any aspect. Generally pest and disease free, Polystichum Tsussimense is also deer and rabbit resistant, making it a great choice in a country garden where animals can be a concern.
Polystichum Tsussimense can be used in a variety of different garden situations. Because of its low growing habit and evergreen foliage, it makes an excellent groundcover, especially in a shady area under trees where more sun-loving plants would suffer. It can also be used as a perennial underplanting for shrubs and rose bushes, or as an accent plant in a rock garden, provided that it is given a rich pocket of soil in which to grow. A massed grouping of Tsushima Holly Fern on a shady slope or by a stream would give year-round interest. Because of its small size, Polystichum Tsussimense also lends itself to container planting, and would be a reliable and hardy evergreen plant on a rooftop terrace or in a courtyard.
Polystichum Tsussimense, with its attractive evergreen foliage and reliable growth habit, is a great choice for any UK gardener looking for a good plant to grow in a moist, shady spot.
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