Variegated Cretan Brake
Pteris cretica 'var. albolineata'
Variegated Cretan Brake foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 20 inches
Spread: 20 inches
Hardiness Zone: 8a
Other Names: Silver Ribbon Fern, Bird's Foot Fern, Albolineata
Interesting, arching mound of bi-colored green, lanceolate fronds with creamy white centers; a great garden groundcover or container plant
Variegated Cretan Brake's serrated narrow compound leaves emerge chartreuse in spring, turning dark green in color with pointy white spines the rest of the year. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.
Variegated Cretan Brake is an herbaceous evergreen fern with a shapely form and gracefully arching fronds. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.
This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Variegated Cretan Brake is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
- Hanging Baskets
Planting & Growing
Variegated Cretan Brake will grow to be about 20 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 inches. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.
This plant does best in partial shade to shade. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Variegated Cretan Brake is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor containers and hanging baskets. It can be used either as 'filler' or as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, depending on the height and form of the other plants used in the container planting. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.
This plant is not reliably hardy in our region, please use with caution in areas where hardiness is a factor.