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Ferns dead or???

Posted by rjinga middle ga, zone 8 (My Page) on
Mon, Mar 31, 08 at 23:08

OK, I have had several big beautiful ferns that were on my patio out back and they were just so huge and heavy there was not a chance of me lifting them to get them into the garage for the winter...I did cover them every time I knew of freezing temps...they did fine until I'd say the freeze before last...and then poof, gone...they just croaked....I took them up from the pots and tossed them...then I saw another fern post and it made me think MAYBE....just MAYBE they were not completely dead...maybe their roots were still ok and they would come back..

what's your experience with this?

Boston ferns by the way....they actually survived for 2 years after buying them...(last year they were not so big and could be moved).

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Ferns dead or???

Dead as a doornail. We had temps WAY WAY too cold for houseplants this year. Boston Ferns are generally hardy to 20 degrees.


RE: Ferns dead or???

  • Posted by rjinga middle ga, zone 8 (My Page) on
    Tue, Apr 1, 08 at 10:06

I actually had some smaller ferns a few years ago, that looked dead and I just left them alone, and they came back to life...not that they were pretty after that...they never got full and big...but they were dead tops and then they started growing...I sure hope that I did not act too hastily in pulliing these guys up...I'm the perpertual optomist....

RE: Ferns dead or???

Let 'em go. I kept a pair of dead Boston ferns on my deck for months til I finally had to admit they were dead dead dead.

RE: Ferns dead or???

Look at the roots. If they're not dead, you'll see white, and little fronds forming. I have had Boston ferns come back from the dead, planted in the ground, very rarely in pots.

RE: Ferns dead or???

Since each frond is a different plant, it's possible they may come back. My husband left our ferns out one night when it was too cold. Whatever was above ground croaked, but new fronds did come up. Give it a few weeks and see what happens.

RE: Ferns dead or???

not the same species or anything, but i had some false blue indigo on one side yard and some fatsia on the other that both looked like they died within 2 months of planting in fall '06 and ... by some stroke of luck (?) they both returned within the last two weeks, nearly 16-17 months later, but in full force, twice as big as the original planting, and in the case of the fatsia, spread out twice as wide as the original planting.

i'm with buford - trim them back, leave them be, keep the soil watered, see what happens. If you get a few fiddleheads or sprigs of green coming through, nurse it back.

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