Western Sword Fern
Growth: Western Sword Fern grows up to 4.5 feet (1.5m) tall.
Habitat: It is usually found in moist forests, but it is probably the most adaptable of all our ferns and can take a bit more sun than other ferns and some dry periods. Wetland designation: FACU, it usually occurs in non-wetlands but occasionally is found in wetlands. Fronds partially unroll their “fiddleheads” by late May; by late July the spores are near maturity.
Use by wildlife: Western Sword Fern is browsed by deer, elk, Black Bear and Mountain Beaver; frequently eaten by Roosevelt Elk on the Olympic Peninsula. The fronds may be used as nesting material for rodents.