Introduction; cultivation of ferns; pests and diseases; ferns in the garden; fern species and cultivars.
Oft regarded as dull and Victorian, ferns could not have had a worse press. But if you have a shady corner which you can't fill, you can be sure there is a fern suitable to add presence and stateliness throughout the year. From their tightly packed fronds curled through winter in readiness for the warmer weather of spring to the gentle unfurling to reveal their summer beauty. And no, they don't all look the same. They have a diversity as wide-ranging as any genus, from the diminutive Blechnum penna-marina to the towering matteuccia struthiopteris; the delicate ash green and pink of Athyrium niponicum var. pictum, the glossy lime green of the Aspleniums; fragile Cheilanthes to the sturdy Dicksonias. Covering cultivation, which plant to choose for what situation, propagation, pests and diseases, this is part of the RHS Wisley handbook series, providing a comprehensive and concise look at ferns, fully illustrated and clearly written. Aimed at both the amateur and professional grower, this is an invaluable addition to any serious horticulturalist's bookshelf. - Lucy Watson