Brilliance™ Autumn Fern
Dryopteris erythrosora 'Brilliance'
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.
Brilliance is a fast grower; usually it takes about 10 to 12 weeks to finish 4 inch pots from 72 cells. For example, if you buy this product from Casa Flora around mid-February, you should expect finished plants by the end of May. They will be full pots but will not have the uniform appearance of plants just out of dormancy. Note that you will have to keep the night temperature around 70°F regardless of where you are located, otherwise Brilliance will take longer to finish.
Brilliance Fern likes well-drained soil, temperature between 68°F and 75°F, and at least 9 hours of 1500 ftc of light. Watch for caterpillars, fungus gnats, and scale as they can become a problem. They are easily treated with your state’s recommended pesticides. Do not use copper-based products on ferns.
Many growers don’t fully understand that ferns are much more beautiful if they go through dormancy. Instead of throwing one frond at a time, ferns that come out of dormancy will throw many fronds within just a few weeks.
As an evergreen, Brilliance does not lose its foliage under short days or cold conditions. Instead, the foliage continues to make food to be stored in the crown. You won’t see much frond elongation during plant dormancy, but frond creation and development continue unseen. Once the conditions are right, these new fronds elongate quickly. Before you put plants into dormancy, allow the roots to develop for about 6-8 weeks so the plants will be strong enough to survive throughout the cold weather.
Brilliance ferns begin to go into dormancy when the air temperature drops below 60°F. You will probably notice increased time between new fronds and eventually the fronds just stop growing. This is easy to see with Brilliance because the plant turns dark green with no copper-orange new fronds. When this happens, keep the temperature as close to 34°F as possible until you decide to bring the plants out of dormancy. Keep plants in dormancy for at least 6 weeks to allow enough new fronds to be formed in the crown. Then once you raise the night temperature up to 70°F, plants will take off and throw out beautiful new fronds within 3-4 weeks.
During plant dormancy, try to avoid fertilizer or too much water as plants are not actively growing and excessive water may cause plants to rot. You should water just enough to just keep the soil moist; if you keep it too wet you may have problems with fungus gnats eating the roots and new fronds, and algae may seal the surface of the soil so that water and air can’t penetrate. Water uptake increases as the fern comes out of the dormancy and you may start to fertilize two weeks after new fronds appear.
During summer time when night temperatures get too high, Brilliance also slows new frond elongation and does not develop new fronds until the night temperature drops back below 80°F.
Casa Flora Number: 58007