Various references report about twelve to fifty species of Cyrtomium that are native to Africa, Asia, and Pacific islands. Reportedly, Cyrtomium is very closely related to the
genus Polystichum. These issues
suggest that the accepted taxonomy of Cyrtomium
may undergo change in the future. Japanese holly fern makes a dense clump of evergreen
foliage. Leaves are shiny and somewhat leathery. It makes an attractive
groundcover for shady locations when planted in groups. It is sometimes grown
as a house plant in cooler climates.
Light: part shade to shade
Water: not very drought tolerant, but tough for a fern
Soil: best in an acidic, moist, well-drained soil
This plant is well known to gardeners in northeast Florida. It grows best
in shade with ample moisture. Irrigation will be necessary in dry sites but do
not plant it in a soggy spot.