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Osmunda cinnamomea - Cinnamon Fern

Scientific Name: Osmunda cinnamomea

Cinnamon fern. Photo by Eleanor Gould.

Common Name: Cinnamon Fern

Description: Hardy, deciduous, Eastern North American perennial; handsome, broadly lance-shaped sterile fronds and distinctive fertile fronds bearing a mass of cinnamon-brown spores at the top in spring

Size: Grows to 36 inches high and 24 inches wide

Cultural Information: Prefers moist, fertile, humus-rich, preferably acidic soil, in light, dappled shade

USDA Zones: 4 through 8

Historical Notes: This fern grew abundantly in forests and stream banks and was first introduced to Europe by early American naturalists in 1772. While ferns were not generally planted in early American gardens the foliage was often used to pack plants for shipping.

Cinnamon fern. Photo by Lily Fox-Bruguiere.


Further Sources


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