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Hemionitis rotundifolia

Previously known as:

  • Pellaea rotundifolia
Phonetic Spelling
hem-ee-oh-NYE-tiss ro-tun-dih-FOL-lee-uh
Description

Button fern is an small, compact, evergreen fern, native to Australia and New Zealand, that does well outdoors in warm climates or as a houseplant in areas north of USDA zone 9. In its native habitat it is often found in cliff sides, rocky crevices, and moist forest. The plant does not flower; however, it does boast arching fronds that will mature to a height of 1 foot and are covered with glossy, deep green leaflets. The leaf stalks will turn a dark red as the plant ages. The genus name is Greek for dark, referring to the dark color of the stalks. The species name is Latin for round for the shape of the leaves.

Button fern can be grown outdoors in filtered shade with regular water, although it does have some tolerance for sunny and shady conditions. Site the plant where it will be protected from strong winds. Unlike other ferns, Button fern will grow in clay soils and occasionally dry soils, but it is intolerant of overly moist soils. It is winter hardy in zone 9 and can survive a 25°F winter chill, but it will not do well with extended periods of below freezing weather. Indoors, it is best grown in indirect or subdued light and an acidic, humus-rich, peaty potting mix with good drainage. It does not require the misting and humid conditions preferred by most other ferns. Propagate by breaking off pieces of rhizome.

Diseases, Insect Pests, and Other Plant Problems:

No known diseases or insect pests.

VIDEO Created by NC State Extension's Homegrown series featuring Mark Weathington, Director of JC Raulston Arboretum.

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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#houseplant#perennials#fern#evergreen ferns#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#houseplant#perennials#fern#evergreen ferns#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Hemionitis
    Species:
    rotundifolia
    Family:
    Pteridaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Australia and New Zealand
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 6 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Fern
    Houseplant
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Arching
    Erect
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, 11b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Description:
    No fruits. This plants reproduces via spores.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Description:
    No flowers.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Glossy
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Long-lasting
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Fronds
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Arching fronds rising and spreading to 12 inches tall and as wide. Each frond is covered with up to 30 small, slightly-glossy, round, deep green pinnae (leaflets to 3/4 of an inch in diameter). Leaf stalks turn a dark red with age.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Hanging Baskets
    Houseplants
    Landscape Theme:
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Specimen
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Rabbits