Cyrtomium falcatum the Japanese Holly Fern is a beautiful medium to large sized evergreen fern for eastern Asian and as the name suggests widely grown in Japan. Often reaching 60-90cm high Cyrtomium falcatum is a special fern worthy of pride of place in a sheltered shady spot in the garden. Young plants sold widely are often mislabelled specimens of Cyrtomium fortunei which is a nice fern in its own right but nowhere near as impressive as a mature Japanese Holly fern. If you are not sure Cyrtomium falcatum at all stages of growth has deep green glossy leaves unlike the paler matt green of its commoner cousin.
Once considered a house plant here in the U.K, partly due to its exotic lush appearance Cyrtomium falcatum is in fact fully hardy in most parts although it does seem to do best in warmer gardens enjoying rich fertile soil where strangely for a fern it seems happy in quiet bright even sunny positions given adequate moisture. On the mention of house plants, the amazing adaptability of this fern and its tolerance of dry atmospheres means that it can indeed be grown as a durable long-term houseplant if you fall in love with it and don’t have the space for it in your garden. I should also mention that Cyrtomium falcatum is suitable for container cultivation outdoors and recommend you use ericaceous compost for best results.