Common Name: Sword Fern, Named after its dagger-shaped leaflets

Common Name: Sword Fern, Named after its dagger-shaped leaflets
  • Binomial Name: Polystichum munitum
  • Soil Type: rich, well-drained soil
  • Sunlight: partial to full shade
  • Form: upright and spreading
  • Foliage: evergreen
  • Fruit/Flower: none

Sword ferns can be found in any Pacific Northwest forest understory as they do best in shady conditions. Found in zones from California to Alaska these hardy plants are easy to grow and take little to no maintenance (Removing dead fronds is the only upkeep really needed).

Named sword Fern because of the dagger shaped leaflets and upright growth. The sword fern can reach up to 4 feet tall and 4 feet wide in the right conditions and may get as many as 100 fronds from the base. This plant does nicely in shady flower beds and in woodland settings, pretty much anywhere it can get proper shading and good drainage.


This Native Plant of the Month is brought to you by the City of Beaverton’s Landscape and Urban Forestry Department. Visit Clean Water Service’s Native Plant Finder webpage for interactive questions to help you find the right native plant to fit your needs!

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Beaverton Resource Guide June 2021

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