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Uses

Toxic parts

Although we have found no reports of toxicity for this species, a number of ferns contain carcinogens so some caution is advisable[1]. Many ferns also contain thiaminase, an enzyme that robs the body of its vitamin B complex. In small quantities this enzyme will do no harm to people eating an adequate diet that is rich in vitamin B, though large quantities can cause severe health problems. The enzyme is destroyed by heat or thorough drying, so cooking the plant will remove the thiaminase[2].

Edible uses

Notes

Young fronds - raw or cooked[3][4][5][2]. Used before they fully unroll, they are thick and succulent[6]. Sometimes sold in speciality markets, the flavour can be compared to asparagus[1]. Another report says that they are a famine food that is only used in times of need in China[7]. Rootstock - peeled and roasted[8][2][6].

Leaves

Material uses

Plants make a good ground cover[1] when spaced about 60cm apart each way[9]. They spread slowly and the fronds tend to die off earlier in the autumn than most ferns[9].
There are no material uses listed for Matteuccia struthiopteris.

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

A decoction of the leaf stalk base from sterile fronds has been taken in the treatment of back pain and also to help speed up the expulsion of the afterbirth[10].

Unknown part

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Soil surface

Ecological Functions

Ground cover

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Spores - surface sow as soon as they are ripe in mid-winter and keep the soil moist. It is best to keep the pot in a sealed plastic bag to hold in the moisture. Pot up small clumps of the young plants as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow on in light shade until large enough to plant out. Division during the dormant season between October and March[11]. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Matteuccia struthiopteris. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Requires a moist but well-drained position and light shade[11][12]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Dislikes full sun, the leaves turning yellow and burning in such a situation[1]. Prefers a pH between 5 and 6.5[1].

Dormant plants are hardy to at least -20°c[1]. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[13]. A very ornamental plant[11], it establishes rapidly[12]. It has a short rhizome but produces long stolons, by which it spreads rapidly once established[12], and it can be invasive[1]. Fertile fronds are produced after the first flush of vegetative fronds and persist throughout the following winter. The spores are shed in mid-winter[1].

Grown commercially for its decorative fronds[8]. These fronds are also available as a food from speciality markets[6][1]. Plants can be forced in the winter to provide an early supply of the young shoots[6].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Matteuccia struthiopteris. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Matteuccia struthiopteris.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Matteuccia struthiopteris
Genus
Matteuccia
Family
Polypodiaceae
Imported References
Medicinal uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
2
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
Shade
partial shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Ecosystems
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    ?
    Herbaceous or Woody
    ?
    Life Cycle
    ?
    Growth Rate
    ?
    Mature Size
    Fertility
    ?
    Pollinators
    ?
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type











    References

    1. ? 1.001.011.021.031.041.051.061.071.081.091.101.11 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.12.22.3 Schofield. J. J. Discovering Wild Plants - Alaska, W. Canada and the Northwest. ()
    3. ? 3.03.1 Elias. T. and Dykeman. P. A Field Guide to N. American Edible Wild Plants. Van Nostrand Reinhold ISBN 0442222009 (1982-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.1 Kavasch. B. Native Harvests. Vintage Books ISBN 0-394-72811-4 (1979-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.1 Brooklyn Botanic Garden Oriental Herbs and Vegetables, Vol 39 No. 2. Brooklyn Botanic Garden (1986-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.16.26.36.4 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.18.2 Coon. N. The Dictionary of Useful Plants. Rodale Press ISBN 0-87857-090-x (1975-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.19.2 Thomas. G. S. Plants for Ground Cover J. M. Dent & Sons ISBN 0-460-12609-1 (1990-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.1 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.111.2 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.112.2 Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Perennials Volumes 1 and 2. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30936-9 (1991-00-00)
    13. ? Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
    14. ? Davis. P. H. Flora of Turkey. Edinburgh University Press (1965-00-00)