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The fronds or leaves start green and small, and the fertile spore-bearing fronds are shorter and become a cinnamon color which gives this fern its name. Growing between an average of 2 to 3 feet it can reach 5 feet in constant moisture, however, can quickly accumulate and adapt to lesser conditions. This fern is an excellent selection along streams, water gardens, bogs, or along ponds. They remain attractive throughout the summer, and during the descent into autumn, they turn yellow, bringing natural beauty to any landscape it resides. In history, this plant was used as a food source and surprisingly for medicinal purposes making this beautiful and also beneficial addition to any landscape.
They produce two types of fronds the big green ones which are sterile and the small fertile ones who start green but later turn to cinnamon color, and that gives the plant its name, Cinnamon fern. Young fronds are called 'fiddleheads' and are edible. They grow up to five feet tall and look beautiful in spring and summer months. During fall and winter, the fertile fronds look stunning in the snow. The fertile fronds carry sori on them which make spores that help in the propagation of the plant.
In swampy areas, this cinnamon fern forms large colonies.
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The contrasting color and stature of the fronds give a tall and elegant look to this plant and makes it very valuable for landscaping. They are very adaptable and require less maintenance and flourish in large clusters in shady areas. Cinnamon fern is used in landscaping as containers, borders, and inside yards. They are an excellent choice for bog gardens, water gardens, and wild gardens. They are harvested for Osmunda fiber, which is used as a potting medium for orchids.
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Osmundastrum Cinnamomum
USDA Climate Zone: 4-10
Tree Height: 3-6 feet
Tree Spread: one foot
Soil Type: Needs wet or continuously moist soil.
Sun: Filtered sun
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