Hard Shield Fern Overview
Polystichum aculeatum is also known by the names prickly shield fern and hard shield fern after the texture of its foliage. It is a hardy, evergreen fern species that produces a neat rosette of bipinnately divided foliage. On the second leaf division, there are pickles. Leaves are arranged on long, lance-shaped fronds measuring around 90cm in length. These are arching and erect in their habit, leathery in texture and dark green in colour. This fern species is native to Europe and the UK, where it is frequently found at high altitudes in woodlands. It has earnt a Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit.