Information About Boston Ferns


Boston Fern Diseases: Caring For Unhealthy Boston Ferns

By Teo Spengler

Boston ferns require adequate sunlight, water and nutrients to thrive, and good cultural practices help keep them healthy. If it doesn't get the best care - or even if it does - it may be attacked by diseases. Click here to learn more.

Boston Fern Humidity – Learn About Boston Fern Misting Needs

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Boston fern is native to tropical climates and without a high level of humidity, the plant is likely to display dry, brown leaf tips, yellow leaves, and leaf drop. Read this article to learn more about improving Boston fern indoor air.

Boston Fern Leaf Drop: Why Leaflets Fall From Boston Fern Plants

By Kristi Waterworth

Boston ferns are great indoor accent plants, but they've earned a reputation for being difficult to care for due to frequent yellowing, drying or dropping of their leaves once inside. Learn how to prevent or halt Boston fern leaf drop in this informative article.

Boston Fern Turning Brown: Treating Brown Fronds On Boston Fern Plant

By Bonnie L. Grant, Certified Urban Agriculturist

The Boston fern plant requires plenty of humidity and low light to prevent the fern from turning brown. If you have a Boston fern with brown leaves, it might be cultural or simply the wrong site for the plant. Learn more in this article.

Watering A Boston Fern: Learn About Boston Fern Watering Needs

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Watering a Boston fern isn?t rocket science, but understanding how much and how often to water Boston fern requires a bit of practice and careful attention. Too much or too little water are both detrimental. Click here for more info.

Boston Fern Outdoors: Can A Boston Fern Be Grown Outside

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

Boston fern is a lush, old-fashioned plant valued for its lacy, bright green foliage. When grown indoors, this easy-care plant provides an air of elegance and style. But can your grow Boston fern outdoors? Read here to find out.

Boston Fern Repotting: How And When To Repot Boston Ferns

By Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer

A healthy, mature Boston fern is an impressive plant that displays a deep green color and lush fronds that can reach lengths of up to 5 feet. Although it requires minimal maintenance, it periodically outgrows its container. Learn how to repot Boston fern here.


How to Care for Boston Ferns Outside

Boston fern conjures up images of Victorian parlors and shirtwaists with ruffles. This old-fashioned plant is a classic fern with lush, lacy, bright green foliage and is often placed on an elaborate brass stand or in a hanging basket. Although more often considered a houseplant, it can also be grown outdoors in USDA Zones 9 through 11.

Growing Boston Fern Outdoors

Warm humid climates such as those found in Florida and Louisiana – they are often seen hanging from balconies in New Orleans – are ideal. The combination of warmth and humidity is key. You’ll have more trouble growing them in a place like Arizona unless you can boost humidity considerably. If you have frost in your area, the plant may die back but will regrow in spring.

Location, Location

A Boston fern grown outdoors will do best in an area of partial to full shade. Dappled shade or an area under a lath structure can also be a good choice. If it is exposed to direct sunlight, the exposure should occur only in early morning or late evening when the sun is low. Build up the bed with rich organic soil, using leaf mold, compost or finely chopped bark.

Water Matters

Boston fern has no tolerance for drought. The soil should be constantly moist, although it should not be so wet as to be soggy or waterlogged. Boston ferns grown outside may be exposed to drying winds and should be checked every day, especially when grown in a container or hanging basket. Some may need to be watered twice daily in hot weather.

Boston Fern Pests

When grown indoors, Boston ferns don’t usually have much trouble with pests. Scale can occur on plants grown both indoors and out. Mealy bugs – often worse in greenhouses – can also be a problem for indoor and outdoor plants. Outdoors, however, it’s a different story. Slugs are the worst enemy – a heavy slug infestation can denude the plant.

Combating Insect Pests

Boston ferns are sensitive to insecticides, so organic methods are usually a better choice. Try the following:

  • Hand pick slugs and drop in a bucket of soapy water.
  • Sprinkle dry crushed eggshells, coffee grounds or diatomaceous earth around plants.
  • Spray plants with insecticidal soap for scale and mealy bugs rinse well.

Fertilizing Boston Fern

Boston ferns are usually considered light feeders. They do better with infrequent feedings or with slow-release fertilizers. A water-soluble organic fertilizer is a good choice. Dilute to half strength and feed once a month during the growing season. If you choose slow-release fertilizer, apply in early spring and repeat after six to eight weeks.


Holly Fern

These kinds of ferns have fronds with dark green leaves, a glossy texture, and prickly edges like holly. Two common species that are commonly known as holly fern are Cyrtomium falcatum in the genus Cyrtomium and Polystichum lonchitis in the genus Polystichum.

  1. Cyrtomium falcatum is perennial plant. It is also known as the Japanese holly fern. It is native to the Asian continent. It has fronds of approximately 0.5 m. This fern flourishes in dim light, and hence, it is suitable for growing indoors.
  2. Polystichum lonchitis is also known as northern holly fern. It is native to the Northern Hemisphere (Europe, Asia, and North America).

Holly ferns are drought-resistant and deer-resistant.

Boston Fern

It is also known as a sword fern, and its scientific name is Nephrolepis exaltata . It has arching feather-like, dark green fronds. It is a popular houseplant especially planted in hanging baskets. It requires bright or average light, sufficiently high humidity, and it thrives in temperatures ranging between 60 to 75°F. It does not grow well in lower temperatures, and hence, it should be kept indoors in winter. For a dense foliage, misting the fern (i.e., spraying it with water) is advisable. This fern can be reproduced through runners, i.e., branches or stems. It procreates naturally through spores.

Maidenhair Fern

Maidenhair ferns are those ferns that grow on land, with sizes ranging from small to large, belonging to the genus Adiantum. Their fronds are delicate, branched out like palms, and are waxy (i.e., water drains away from their surface). In nature, these ferns abound in moist areas like places around streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, and waterfalls. They can be grown indoors, but require a lot of care as they require high humidity. At the same time, their leaves cannot tolerate misting. Also, they should not be exposed to direct sunlight.

Staghorn Fern

Staghorn ferns belong to the genus Platycerium. The fronds of this type of fern appear like the antlers of a stag. It also has basal leaves (leaves that arise directly from the root or a root-like stem), and these leaves do not take part in reproduction and eventually turn brown. The antler-like fronds have spores that are responsible for reproduction. If provided with moderate moisture and humus-rich medium, they can be grown indoors.


Watch the video: How to grow and maintain big beautiful Boston Ferns


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