Killing ferns

Asked September 4, 2019, 12:02 PM EDT

Will rock salt kill ferns in my garden?

Oakland County Michigan

1 Response


I checked several references and none lists ferns as being tolerant of salt. So, I would say that ferns are injured like other herbaceous plants, by salt, showing stunted growth, leaf burn and some dieback. A large amount in the soil may kill roots or may not.

Are you thinking of using salt as a herbicide? That wouldn’t be recommended because salt:

• Accumulates in soil

• Damages soil structure

• Injurious to many plants, trees, shrubs nearby

• Readily leaches and contaminates groundwater

• Increases runoff of heavy metals

• Increases soil erosion

If you would like to tell me more about what you are trying to do with your ferns, I may be able to help more. Thank you for using our service.