Dryopteris cycadina is a tall fern with elegant foliage and the stems covered in dark hairs giving it its distinctive appearance. The ‘Shaggy Shield Fern’ or ‘Black Wood Fern’ is so-called because of the dark, almost black scales covering the black leaf bases and crown. This, when contrasted with the bright green fronds, makes the plants extremely appealing. It has a strong habit of growth and robust leathery leaves the leaflets of which bear serrated margins. Dryopteris atrata is a synonym and exotic gardeners will notice the specific name, which acknowledges the plant's passing resemblance to a cycad.
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Primula bullesiana is a lovely hybrid between Primula bulleyana and Primula beesiana. A semi- evergreen perennial with orate to lance shaped, dark green leaves. Tall stems produce flowers of…