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- Purple-Stemmed Cliff Brake Fern – Pellaea atropurpurea is a perennial fern plant that grows in an asymmetric clump. Hardy 3-8
Purple Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern Landscaping Benefits
Purple-Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern solves a rocky problem
Life on the rocks - sometimes you have to make the best of what you’ve got. There are few things in nature that embody this like the Purple-Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern. This beautiful and hardy evergreen grows where there is very little soil. It loves limestone.
If you want your dry, rocky soil covered with greenery year-round, this may just be the answer you’ve been looking for. It needs very little water, once established. It grows up to a foot in height and up to two feet across. It grows asymmetrically so you can have fun with placement and textures.
If you’re in zones 5 through 9 you can grow the Purple-Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern. It’s best to place it where people won’t be walking as one of the few things that it is sensitive to is human traffic. Unlike most ferns, this one likes full-sun a lot. It’s drought and disease resistant too.
This beautiful member of the Maidenhair Fern family would look great in a cactus bed, preventing erosion along a berm, or gracing a bed alongside a rock wall. While it is accustomed to dry, rocky soil, the Purple-Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern adapts well to any soil.
From Eastern Canada through most of the United States, this plant can make itself at home. It reproduces rhizomatically so it can be great in areas you’d like a thick, low-maintenance green covering throughout the year.
A plant can be either sterile or fertile. The sides of the leaves of fertile plants are rolled under. The spores grow in the pocket that creates.
People will be asking you about this ground cover. You can tell them where you got yours, and how easy they are to care for and how they solved that seemingly insurmountable problem you had with your landscape design.
The Purple-Stemmed Cliffbrake Fern is shipped directly to the consumer in bare root form to ensure it arrives in excellent condition.
This drought-tolerant plant does well in zones 5 through 9 and adds subtle color and texture to the landscape of areas where other plants have difficulty growing. In fact, this hardy evergreen is native to zones that would ordinarily be considered dissimilar in climate. Because of its ability to thrive in limestone-rich soil, this unique fern tolerates Arizona’s full sun, Florida’s humidity, and Vermont’s northern ruggedness with the same hardiness.
Within each clump growing among the rocky cliffs, the stem holds five or six shafts. Its shafts reveal sparse and asymmetrical frond growth. The lack of ostentation combined with its low-maintenance appeal creates surprising versatility in the garden. Part of the interest this fern creates is its size variance. The stems may range from two to 20 inches, while the fronds can vary in length from four to twelve inches.
At first glance, the Purple-stemmed Cliffbrake might appear too fragile to withstand the requirements needed to sustain itself in unforgiving conditions. That’s the beauty of this plant – under its seemingly delicate structure, exists a formidable earthiness.
This plant thrives on a masonry wall that’s weathered with time. So long as it’s left alone to adapt to its environment, it will fully mature enough in three to four years to create spores. It’s thought that the reason why the Purple-stemmed Cliffbrake flourishes on masonry walls is due in part to its ability to reproduce asexually. Combined with the calcium-laden components found in both limestone and cement, its an environment in which this fern is comfortably at home.