Pot has clogged drain hole

Q: I have some beautiful potted woodland ferns on my patio. They range in age from about 5 to 20 years old. They have all grown full this spring, but now on one plant all the fronds are wilting and seem to bend near the base. Last year this happened to each pot one after another. What should I do?

A: This very much looks like a root problem, possibly from soggy soil.

Turn each pot on its side to be sure the drainage hole is not blocked. If you have not repotted the ferns in a couple of years, that’s the first thing I would do.