Polypodium vulgare

2 litre pot £19.99
shipped within 2 weeks
Quantity 1 Plus Minus
Buy Polypodium vulgare common polypody: Native evergreen fern. Very versatile!

  • Position: full sun or dappled shade
  • Soil: moderately fertile, humus-rich, gritty or stony, well-drained soil
  • Rate of growth: average
  • Hardiness: fully hardy

    This evergreen fern is a native of Britain, and as such is one of the most versatile for our climate, being content in most soils, damp or dry. It has long, leathery, dark green fronds with a slight sheen, and an attractive, lacy appearance. Try growing it in walls, where there is little soil, or securing it into trees for a tropical effect. It also looks wonderful left to colonise in a woodland setting or under deciduous trees. If it is happy, it will spread almost indefinitely, but never becomes invasive.

  • Garden care: This easy plant can also be grown epiphytically in bright filtered light. Wrap the rhizomes in moss and tie to a suitable rooting medium and keep moist until established. Shelter from cold, drying winds. Remove dead foliage in spring. HD

Delivery options

  • Standard
Delivery information

Eventual height & spread

Eventual height and spread

Notes on Polypodium vulgare

"Neatly serrated fronds of shiny mid-green leaf come into their own in winter when they warm the soul and polypodies are good on airy banks"

  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Share by email

Excellent plant for woodland / shady corner


Lovely healthy dark green fern. Plants were very healthy and have established well over the last few months. No casualties!

David W



What I was looking for


I bought this fern to plant in a shadier part of my allotment. It has proved it's hardiness so far by surviving the winter. I literally haven't tended to it at all, and it seems happy, and what I wanted.




Nice fern


I ordered 2 of these a couple of years ago and have kept them in containers. They struggle with the cold a bit, but they soon recover. I'm very pleased with them.




I recommend this plant


Attractive addition to shade under a large lollipop-headed yew tree. Have used it with dryopteris erythrosora plus several other ferns in a planting with rodgersia (bronze tinged) and brunnera Alexander's Great. It still looks happy despite our our wet Welsh winter weather.


London and Wales


A useful everygreen for a shady spot


Although, only in it's first year in the garden, this Polypodium has grown well. It's in a shade for much of the day but seems quite happy and even in December is looking good. We've not had much in the way of frost yet but it doesn't seem to have been affected by the few days that we had. Seems perfect for damp, Scottish climate.





4.6 5


Dear Crocus Pant Doctor, I note in your description that this particular fern can be grown in full sun: is this correct?


Hello, It is happiest in a partially shaded spot, however it can tolerate full sun - although it may need watering more often here.


Non poisonous plants for pots please Hi I wonder if you can help. I have a Nursery school and am looking for some plants I can plant in pots, that are in a partly sunny, partly shady spot. They have to be plants that aren't poisonous and provide interest over as much of the year as possible. I really like the plants in you ready made border section on the website site, particularly shady pink, sunny pink and keep it cool. Could you please tell me if any of these plants are suitable for my needs? Many Thanks Joanne

Happy Hearts Day Nursery

Hello Joanne, I think your best option would be to opt for mainly evergreen shrubs as these will provide year-round interest. You can then infill with some of the more colourful perennials. As long as the spot does not get too much shade, then here are some of your best options. Hebe http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.hebe/ Vinca http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.vinca/ Pachysandra terminalis http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/shrubs/prices-that-have-been-pruned/pachysandra-terminalis-/classid.3288/ evergreen ferns http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/plcid.309/vid.228/ Rhododendrons (choose the smaller varieties for pots) http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.rhododendron/start.1/sort.0/cat.plants/ I hope this gives you a few ideas. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Native plants for a grave..... Hi, I'm looking for some UK native plants for my friends grave. It's a woodland cemetery, hence the native. Preferably something that won't spiral out of control without excessive upkeep. What can you suggest? Thanks, Jo


Hello Jo, There are a couple of things that I think would be lovely - here are some of the best. Hyacinthoides non-scripta (bluebell) Anemone nemorosa (wood anemone) Galium odoratum (sweet woodruff) Digitalis purpurea (foxglove) Galanthus nivalis (snowdrop) Polypodium vulgare (common polypody) I hope this gives you a few ideas, Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Ferns for a hanging baskets please Hello Crocus I have a newly refurbished South / West facing veranda on my Arts Crafts home. I would like to grow some elegant overhanging ferns in hanging baskets. There is some modest shade under the guttering / eaves and the veranda is very sheltered. Can you recommend a variety please. Thanks in anticipation Margery

Margery Meakes

Hello Margery, We do have advice regarding the soil type and care tips on the link I sent you. They are fully hardy so will be fine without protection in winter but will need lots of water during summer if grown in a hanging basket. Best regards, Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Thanks Helen, I will order some from you in the next few weeks. If you can also advise on how, and in what I plant them, the best way to look after them during the growing season, and also how to overwintering. Thanks again in anticipation. Regards Margery

Margery Meakes

Hello Margery, As it spreads by rhizome, the best fern for this setting would be Polypodium vulgare - just click on the following link to go straight to it. http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/polypodium-vulgare-/classid.1835/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Help with ferns to plant in large pots I would like to buy some ferns to go in pots to grow along the side of my house. The site is not too shady. Could you suggest four different types that will not outgrow their pots too quickly? I have looked at the selection of ferns on your website and think they look fabulous. I look forward to hearing from you so that I can put in an order. Many thanks. Beryl

Beryl Booker

Hello Beryl, Most of the ferns will thrive in pots, provided they are kept well watered. Therefore I would opt for some evergreen ferns such as the following Polypodium vulgare http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/polypodium-vulgare-/classid.1835/ Polystichum munitum http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/polystichum-munitum-/classid.1838/ Cyrtomium fortunei http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/cyrtomium-fortunei-/classid.2000004668/ Asplenium scolopendrium http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/ferns/asplenium-scolopendrium-/classid.1808/ I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Rich green foliage for autumn

Come the autumn when the flowers may be fading away, and the lipstick-red, sombre-burgundy, orange-peel and mustard-seed foliage is at it's best in the autumn sunshine, green foliage begins to glow, lifting the spirits on the first really cold mornings.

Read full article

Winter containers

When the days are at their shortest and the sun is sinking lower day by day a winter container can help to improve your fading garden and raise your spirits. Place it by the main door, or in another prominent but sheltered place, and it will be a beacon o

Read full article

Low maintenance plants for a shady garden

We all want a lovely garden but sometimes we are too busy with work and family, or we simply don’t have the inclination to garden incessantly, so the trick is to choose low maintenance plants such as easy shrubs and then to underplant them with ground cov

Read full article

Download our free gardening app to help you grow

Download on the App Store Get it on Google Play