Osmunda regalis var regalis

(European Royal, Fern)


Hardiness Zones:

 10a  10b  2a  2b  3a  3b  4a  4b  5a  5b  6a  6b  7a  7b  8a  8b  9a  9b

Quick Overview:

Royal fern is a tall, deciduous, North Carolina native fern which usually occurs on moist bluffs and ledges and along streams (sometimes growing in the water). It typically grows in clumps to 2-3′ tall, but with constant moisture can reach 6′ in height. Broad fronds have large, well-separated pinnae (leaflets) which give this fern an almost pea-family appearance. Fronds typically turn yellow to brown in autumn. Spores are located in brown, tassel-like, fertile clusters at the tips of the fronds, thus giving rise to the additional common name of flowering fern for this plant. Osmunda fiber used in the potting of orchids comes from the fibrous roots of these ferns. There is a distinct difference in the appearance of the American and European Royal Ferns. The European strain has fronds that are fuller, taller, and the leaflets are larger and fleshier appearing. In Europe there are old clumping specimens growing next to constant water sources that are ten feet high.


Easily grown in medium to wet soils in part shade to full shade. Prefers moist, rich, humusy, acidic soils, but adapts to lesser conditions.

Additional information

Common Name

European Royal, Fern

Botanical Name

Osmunda regalis var regalis


1 Quart

Evergreen or Deciduous


Hardiness Zone

10a, 10b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b

Growth Rate


Light Requirements

Part-shade, Part-sun, Shade


5 to 8 ft.


5 ft.

Soil Condition

Wet Soils

Water Needs




Foliage Color


Deer Resistant


Pin It on Pinterest