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Leucanopteris mirabilis/Ant Fern

Leucanopteris mirabilis / Leucanopteris mirabilis
A young plant growing in the conservatory at the New Orleans Botanical Garden in City Park
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A young plant growing in the conservatory at the New Orleans Botanical Garden in City Park

Plants growing in a sphagnum moss wall

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Scientific Name: Leucanopteris mirabilis
Common Name: Ant Fern
Plant Type: Evergreen
Leaf Type: Broadleaf
Hardiness Zone: 10, 11 Determine Your Zone
Height: 1-2 feet
Spread: 2 -3 feet
Light Exposure: Part Sun, Filtered Shade, Shade, Morning sun
Drainage: Well drained, Moist
Rate of Growth: Slow
Water Requirement: Medium
Maintenance Level: Low
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Comments: This is a fern which grows on organic matter and attracts ants. It produces rhizomes like plates stacked on top of one another providing hiding places for ants. Ants provide protection and nutrients to the plants. It cannot tolerate very high temperatures.