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Designing a container ‘fernery’

Hi! I’m trying to design a fernery in pots to cover up a patch of driveway that gets covered in algae.
so far I have decided on two pots; one with athyrium riponicum var. pictum and Pulmonaria ‘Trevi fountain’, and the other with digitalis ‘goldcrest’ and a fern I found at a garden centre recently. I’m struggling to think of a combinatikn for another container as I think 2 would look odd- any ideas? 


  • How about one of the Polystichum ferns and a Heuchera or Tiarella?
  • TheGreenManTheGreenMan Tyne & Wear Green Belt Posts: 1,613
    How about a Dryopteris erythrosora in a pot by itself? To maybe sit at the top of the triangle in the three! They bring beautiful colours throughout the year (red, yellow, green, peach) and are evergreen. I just chop off any fronds that are getting in the way of other pots or ones that are looking tired. Mine has been pushing out new ones all year. 

    Or even perhaps a good old felix-mas but they're deciduous so you'd have a few months of nothing but unfurling fronds. They do look beautiful though. Mine thinks it's a star:

  • TheGreenManTheGreenMan Tyne & Wear Green Belt Posts: 1,613
    Just been out in the rain to have a look at my others. 

    What about Hart's Tongue with some Lamium White Nancy or Purple Dragon or a Heuchera as @Pianoplayer suggested (silver Scrolls might be nice)

  • How about one of the Polystichum ferns and a Heuchera or Tiarella?

    That's such a good idea! I love the Heuchera for their leaf colour in the winter
  • @JamesS-B I love your Dryopteris erythrosora! I never actually considered just having a fern in a container alone, maybe I was overcomplicating it but there's so much interest with this one - I hope I can find this in my garden centre this weekend !! 
  • TheGreenManTheGreenMan Tyne & Wear Green Belt Posts: 1,613
    I hope you can. I've just looked online and it appears to be in stock on a few sites so you could always do that if you're out of luck.

    I think a lovely, big, colourful one like that would look great in a pot by itself kind of hugging the other two pots. 
  • edhelkaedhelka GwyneddPosts: 2,267
    I have quite a large pot with trailing euonymus, polygonatum and Dryopteris wallichiana. My favorite evergreen ferns are Asplenium scolopendrium and Polystichum munitum, I would say Athyrium niponicum is very pretty but makes almost no impact because it's very small. It gets lost if planted with larger ferns or plants. You could also consider grasses (hakonechloa, liriope) and hostas.
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