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Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' (autumn fern)

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Hardy fern grow sheet

Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance'

autumn fern

Autumn fern is a colorful groundcover with pink fiddleheads that turn coppery orange as they unfurl. Fronds age to a lustrous dark green and remain well into winter. New growth continues through the season, giving a colorful tapestry effect of copper and green from spring to late fall.

Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' LP32 - 32 per flat Availability
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18-30 Inches


18-30 Inches


12 Inches

Bloom Color

USDA Hardiness Zone 5-8

autumn fern Interesting Notes

It was love at first sight when we first laid eyes on Brilliance™ Autumn Fern (Dryopteris erythrosora Brilliance'). Its glossy fronds greet the spring dressed in bright orange/salmon and rose tones and hold their color well into summer before turning an appropriately shiny dark green for summer and lasting all winter. We have no doubt that you will be impressed with this plant’s brilliant contribution to the garden panorama.

Brilliance™ Autumn Fern adds a shower of intense and lustrous color wherever needed in partial to fully shaded garden sites. New fronds greet the spring dressed in bright orange/salmon and rose tones, and it holds its color well into summer before turning an appropriately shiny green. Like most Dryopteris it is drought-tolerant once established, and remains fresh after many of its companion shrubs show signs of wilting. This is an evergreen Casa Flora exclusive that will reach 18 to 24” in a comfortably ferny setting. Give it a place of honor in Zones 5–8. - Casa Flora

Dryopteris is translated from the Greek as "oak fern" and erythrosora translates as "red sori", referring to the spore-bearing structures on the undersides of the leaflets.

One of the best choices for landscapes, although its common name is misleading. Its peak of color is in spring when its fronds unfurl copper-red or pink and eventually fade to a bronze-green. In late summer, bright-red spore clusters (sori) appear on frond undersides. In fall, fronds can change to a slightly more russet tone.

Hardy to USDA Hardiness Zone 5 and stays evergreen in frost-free areas. It can be a high, tropical-appearing groundcover, a specimen plant or a backdrop for shade-loving flowering perennials. It has no serious pest or disease problems, but does require evenly moist soil. If plants begin to dry out, they will wilt and change color slightly as a warning they need more water.

Named a Florida plant of the year for 1998 by the Florida Nurserymen & Growers Association. It is well suited for container production under shade cloth and can be treated like other shade perennials such as hostas.

Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance' Growing and Maintenance Tips

Prefers moist, rich, well-drained, acidic soils in full to partial shade. Intolerant of drought, compacted or poor soils. Spreads slowly by rhizomes.

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Shade
Full Shade
Part Sun
Part Sun
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Plug Type
Landscape Plug™
Green Infrastructure
Ornamental Foliage
Propagation Type
Tissue culture