Soft Shield Fern - Polystichum setiferum

Alt Name
Soft Shield-fern

Polystichum setiferum is a tufted evergreen fern to 1.2 metres in height, with rosettes of soft textured, lance-shaped mid-green fronds, the stalks with prominent orange-brown scales.

Photo ID?

Often found in wooded areas or near water. It prefers cool, fertile, moist, humus-rich, shaded soils.

When to see it

All year round.

Life History


UK Status

Widespread in Britain except for the north of Scotland.

VC55 Status

Occasional but probably increasing in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 12 of the 617 tetrads.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map

UK Map