Dicksonia antartica 1foot

Dicksonia antartica 1foot

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Dicksonia antartica

The hardiest and most popular of all the tree ferns. Nothing will add the drama to a shady spot than a dicksonia will. The most important thing when growing dicksonia is it must have plenty of water especially when rooting. The fronds can be 2m or more even on small trunks if well watered and fed regularly. We recommend a specialist tree fern food. Best in shade or partal shade and kept out of strong winds. A handful of straw in crown for winter.

What you recieve

You will recieve a 1ft bare trunk ready to frond as  soon as it arrives give it a good water and plant as soon as possible. If you cant plant straight away store in a shady cool place and keep moist.

Planting and care

To plant your Tree Fern either in a pot or in the ground place the trunk onto the soil that has been dug over with the addition of some organic matter then wriggle the trunk into the ground 3-4 cm and then firm around it you can then push a small stake or bamboo cane in beside it and tie the Tree Fern to it to keep it upright till it roots which will take 6-12 months once its rooted you can remove the support. I then like to mulch the area around the Tree Fern and then give it a really good water.  The most important thing when growing a great Tree Fern is to keep them really well watered and fed you should try to water your new Tree Fern at least 3 times a week, watering every day would not be to much the more water it has the better it will be. I like to feed new Tree Ferns every 2 weeks with a liquid feed into the crown Our Tree Fern Food is great for this. Feeding will help the Tree Fern to root and frond it will use the food to do this rather than its own stored food this will give you a stronger plant going forward. Your Tree Fern will need winter protection in most winters a good handfull of straw or fleece in the crown will do. In a cold winter like 2011 you will need to wrap the trunk you can use fleece or loft insulation if your Tree Fern is not rooted make sure it stays moist in winter.   

Planting position

Dicksonia antarctica is best planted in moist shade or semi shade you can grow them in sunnier positions but they will need very regular watering and i find the bigger trunks do better if you want to grow them in full sunas they naturally hold more water.

Soil

Dicksonia antarctica will grow in most soil types the important thing is moisture retention so add plenty of organic matter before planting and keep well mulched with bark which will also help keep weed down.

Container growing

Dicksonia can be grown in a container it is very important to use a good soil based compost and to feed and water regularly. If you find the head of your Dicksonia is getting smaller it needs more food or repotting if you cannot repot you can root prune it and add new soil or think about planting it in the garden.

Height and Spead

Dicksonia can reach 20ft but they are increddibly slow growing 2-3cm a year so its one of those plants that you need to buy the size you need. A good Dicksonia can have a frond spead of 3-4m with enough food and water

Dicksonia is evergreen but the fronds will die if we have winter temperatures of -4/-5 or lower if they go brown cut them off leaving 3-4 inches of the stem remaining and wait for new fronds to emerge in the spring.

Hardiness

Dicksonia antarctica are hardy down to -10 or more but always needs winter protection in the crown and if the winter is really cold wrap the trunk.

Uses 

Great architectural plant for a shady spot nothing is more dramatic.