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Interrupted Fern
Osmunda claytoniana

Interrupted fern usually grows in a spreading vase form up to 3' tall, although it can grow taller if soil moisture conditions are good. It often forms colonies. Interrupted fern is well suited for wet areas along ponds, streams, water gardens or in bogs. It grows well in shaded areas of borders, woodland gardens, wild gardens, native plant gardens and rain gardens. This fern is a good soil stabilizer especially with its rapid vegetative growth. It is extremely showy in the spring and holds well through the summer.

USDA symbol: OSCL2

General Information

Plant TypeFern
Height3 feet
Light ExposurePart Sun, Shade
Soil MoistureMedium
Bloom ColorGreen
Interrupted Fern (Interrupted Fern<div><em class="small">Osmunda claytoniana</em></div>)
Photo credit: Minnesota Wildflowers (Click to enlarge)


Flooding / Inundation ToleranceModerate
General Resilience7
Salt ToleranceLow
Stress ToleranceGeneral Disturbance

Pollinator Value: Low

Bloom MonthsMay to October

Project Planning

Project TypeRain Garden, Shoreline Buffer
Coefficient of Conservatism5
Herbivore SensitivityMedium
Rate of SpreadSlow
Soil StabilizationShallow
Vegetative ReproductionClonal


CountyAitkin, Anoka, Becker, Beltrami, Benton, Carlton, Cass, Chisago, Clearwater, Cook, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Hubbard, Isanti, Itasca, Kanabec, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Mower, Olmsted, Otter Tail, Pine, Ramsey, Rice, Roseau, Scott, Sherburne, St. Louis, Stearns, Steele, Todd, Wabasha, Wadena, Washington, Winona, Wright
EcoregionDriftless Area, Lake Agassiz Plain, North Central Hardwood Forests, Northern Lakes and Forests, Northern Minnesota Wetlands, Western Cornbelt Plains
Approximate Eco ProvinceEastern Broadleaf Forest, Laurentian Mixed Forest, Prairie Parkland, Tallgrass Aspen Parklands