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Ming Fern - 20 pack

Product Description

Ming Fern
Asparagus retrofractus,

Seasonal Availability

Vase Life
12 - 14 days

Purchasing Hints
Leaf tips and edges should be free from browning. Overall leaf surface should be glossy and damage-free.

Care and Handling
Remove bundle ties and slant cut one inch from stems base. Place stems in 2-3 inches of tepid water. Condition at room temperature for an hour and then place in a 36 degree F cooler.

Commonly called ming asparagus fern, pom pom asparagus fern and zig zag shrub, is a shrubby herbaceous evergreen perennial that typically grows to 6-8’ tall. It is native to arid regions of South Africa.

This plant is noted for its fern-like foliage of needle-like clusters (20-30 cladophylls per cluster) which are spaced along the stems, with each cluster resembling a pom pom, hence the common name of pom pom asparagus fern. It is not in fact a fern, however. Nor is it an edible vegetable. It is a poisonous and inedible shrub-like perennial of the lily family which has thorny/spiny branches instead of fronds, propagates by seed instead of spores, and has leaf-like cladophylls (stem extensions) which are not leaves but generally perform the functions of leaves. The tiny, scale-like, actual leaves of this plant appear where each cladode meets the stem. Stems create a zig zag branching structure, hence the common name of zig zag shrub. Small, fragrant, 6-petaled, white flowers in open axillary umbels bloom in spring to early summer. Flowers are often followed by small orange round fruits which mature to black.