Common Name: Soft tree fern
Skill Level: Experienced
Exposure: Partial shade, Shade
Soil type: Well-drained/light, Acidic
Tree ferns are becoming more and more popular for the garden and D. antarctica one of the hardier varieties. The thick mass of roots form a trunk, which can eventually reach about 6m (20ft) in the wild. The foliage appears in spring from the top of the trunk, unfurling from the centre to open up into large, rich green fronds. Grow in dappled or deep shade in slightly acidic soil. In winter protect the crown by wrapping it up with straw or dead fronds. It has been given an Award of Garden Merit (AGM), which is for plants of outstanding excellence.