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Is anyone a fern expert?

wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 6,164
Due to a leaking greenhouse gutter that was hidden by a climbing plant, the one corner of my greenhouse floor has been really damp for a few months and I only found out when I was clearing things out in there ready for the winter. The bonus is though that the floor is covered with tiny ferns (fernlings? fernlets?). The floor is just hardcore that was wacked solid 10 years ago ready for slabs to be laid when I eventually get around to it... Anyway I'd like to transplant all the ferns and use them in an experimental vertical garden next year. What do I transplant them into and any tips for giving them a good start over the winter? One of them is quite big now so getting it out of the ground will be tricky. They can stay in the greenhouse under the bench in the shade though.



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  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 3,663
    I'm not a fern expert but I have transplanted young ferns like that; just winkle them out with a kitchen knife and transfer them (along with a good bit of the gravel they're rooted in) to small pots with normal MPC. And keep moist.
  • Papi JoPapi Jo Brittany, France Posts: 3,035
    @wild edges, if you manage to get those ferns out and re-pot them, and start a fern wall, you might be interested to join the "competition" I started here: https://forum.gardenersworld.com/discussion/1031723/fern-wall
    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 6,164
    Thanks @Papi Jo I must have missed your post originally. That's exactly the kind of thing I'm looking for. I'm hoping to mix in some cuttings from my variagated ivy as well and maybe add some seasonal planting pockets for shade loving plants that won't survive the winter here. I'll bookmark your thread and if all goes well I'll post updates as I go along.
  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 6,164
    WillDB said:
    I'm not a fern expert but I have transplanted young ferns like that; just winkle them out with a kitchen knife and transfer them (along with a good bit of the gravel they're rooted in) to small pots with normal MPC. And keep moist.
    I transplanted a few this evening to see how easy it would be. The ground needed more of a chisel than a knife to break up the hardcore though so I didn't manage to save much of an intact root ball. Most had decent loose roots though so I guess time will tell if they survive or not.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 36,083
    I hoik out little ferns all the time that seed into cracks, or places I don't want them. They usually transplant very easily. I moved quite a big one, which I've just replanted after it sat for a week, when we didn't have much rain. It's fine. They're really useful for little gaps.
    I've just put some into a coupleof the baaskets I have on  my green wall - which is a fence  ;)  
    I'm currently experimenting with one in an old fat ball feeder to hang in there too. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 6,164
    That's good to know. I've just found another one growing out of the mudguard of my camper van (which just shows when I last drove the thing :#). I'll add this one to my burgeoning fernery later. I've also remembered there's a hart's tongue fern hiding in the stone wall too which would be better off moved somewhere else.


  • wild edgeswild edges The north west of south east WalesPosts: 6,164
    A bit of a slow burn this project but I've finally started to get the ferns transferred into the felt pots I found dumped in the woods. They'll still need some time to knit the soil together before I can hang them up though. I've planted 11 pots and I've still got 11 to fill once I can get out to buy more compost. The ferns are still self seeding (sporing?) like mad in the greenhouse so if anything goes wrong I'll have plenty of spares. Out of all these I've only bought two just for a bit of variety. I'm adding ivy cuttings to the pots too just to add interest.

  • Papi JoPapi Jo Brittany, France Posts: 3,035
    Well done @wild edges! Looking forward to more news when those ferns are "hanging on a wall".
    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 3,663
    They've come on incredibly well. I do love ferns.
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