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Zones 4-9, 14-17, 22-24
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Polypodium californicum

California Polypody
Polypodiaceae
Ferns

POLYPODIUM

Widespread, variable group of ferns. They usually grow in mosses on trees and logs. All have creeping rhizomes and shed spent fronds cleanly as new growth appears.

Polypodium californicum

Native to California and northwestern Mexico. Bright green fronds 4–12 in. long emerge in fall and stay fresh-looking until late spring or early summer, when plant goes dormant (may be nearly evergreen in coastal gardens). Spreads slowly and widely. Excellent on rocky slopes or beneath trees, as long as drainage is excellent and garden debris is not allowed to bury the rhizomes. ‘Sarah Lyman’ is a choice selection with finely dissected fronds and a more clumping habit. Needs moderate water during growth, little to none during summer dormancy.

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