Hart's-tongue fern

Hart's-tongue Fern

©Paul Lane

Hart's tongue fern

Eden Jackson

Hart's-tongue fern

Scientific name: Asplenium scolopendrium
The hart's-tongue fern is a hardy fern of damp, shady places in woodlands. It also makes a good garden fern. It has simple, tongue-shaped, glossy, green leaves that have orange spores on their undersides.

Species information


Height: up to 60cm

Conservation status


When to see

January to December


The hart's-tongue fern is a medium-sized fern that can be found growing in damp, shady gorges and banks in woodlands, as well as on rocks, walls and mossy branches. It is a hardy plant and is ideal for gardens. Plant it in shade under trees, or on walls or gravelly areas for attractive cover all year-round.

How to identify

The hart's-tongue fern is a very simple fern: the frond is a single, glossy, green blade, with orange spores underneath.



Did you know?

The hart's-tongue fern gets its name because it is thought to look like the tongue of a deer. The leaves are, indeed, tongue-shaped, with pointy, curly tips.