Q.Are All Fox Tail Ferns Dangerous For Pets
We are changing our landscaping, near Jacksonville FL, and contractor wants to plant fox tail ferns around some areas. We have dogs that like to lie in the shrubbery beds and may nibble on a plant. I have read that these ferns are toxic for dogs amd they should not even come in contact with them. He said he has planted them in over 100 landscapes and has never had anyone mention that Are there different varieties that may not be harmful to pets? My wife LOVES fox tail ferns and would really like them placed around our property to soften out hardscape but we want to be 100% sure that they won’t be harmful to our furry kids
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
From my research, it appears it is the asparagus fern (Asparagus densiflorus cv sprengeri) that has the toxicity. Foxtail fern (Asparagus densiflorus 'Myers') isn't listed as toxic. However, since they are so closely related, I would err on the side of caution and consider them the same. The toxicity is low level, however.
Asparagus fern has an arching habit whereas the foxtail fern has a stiff, upright habit.