How To Take Care Of Fern Houseplants

There are numerous species of ferns that are endemic to more temperate climates in addition to the numerous tropical and subtropical fern species. These ferns would thrive in cooler portions of the house but won’t endure in overly warm spaces. The best climate for tropical ferns is a house with central heating. The recommended indoor fern-growing conditions are listed below:


All ferns enjoy wetness, hence they should all be kept in humid environments. Stand the pots in the living and family rooms on trays of wet pebbles or clay granules. Except in situations where a humidifier is used to maintain a high level of humidity across the entire space, ferns also enjoy being misted often with tepid, soft water.


Additionally, you must offer the proper compost. The majority of ferns are woodland or forest plants with fragile, soft roots adapted to the light forest soil that is rich in leaf mold and decomposing plant waste. To prevent the roots from ever becoming soggy, the ideal compost must be freely draining. The finest compost is one that has peat or a fibrous peat substitute together with lots of sand. The plant may need to be watered a little bit each day in a warm, dry environment in order to prevent the compost from drying out.


Though the majority of ferns prefer wet, shaded environments like forest floors, this does not imply that they are light-independent. If the lighting in your home is excessively dim compared to their natural environment, you will notice poor growth and fading fronds. Keep your ferns away from direct sunlight, especially in the summer, and place them close to a window that receives morning or late-afternoon sun. They will either lose their leaves or have yellowed fronds if exposed to direct sunshine.

As long as you give your ferns periodic pauses in strong light, you can keep them in low light. They can receive artificial light, but it should come from a fluorescent strip or a specific gardening bulb. The heat produced by standard light bulbs is too much.


How high or low of a temperature a given fern requires will depend on its origin and adaptability. Most ferns dislike chilly weather. Tropical ferns really enjoy temperatures between 60 and 70 F. (15-21 C.). People from drier climates prefer temperatures of 50 to 60 F. (10-16 C).


Every two to four weeks during the summer, give your ferns a liquid fertilizer feeding, but don’t mix it at full strength as this could harm the roots. For misting, a few drops of fertilizer can be sporadically added to the water. Because they relax during the winter, don’t feed your ferns. Mist your ferns frequently to keep the air around them moist.


Spring is the best season to repot ferns, but only if the pot is completely filled with roots. If not, simply remove the compost’s top layer and add more compost in its place. To promote fresh growth, remove any broken fronds.

Make two ferns out of one when you repot them by cutting them in half. The powdery spores that are produced in tiny capsules can also be used to create new ferns. On the underside of the fronds, rows of rusty, brown blotches represent these capsules. These will develop into a green coating, which will then support the fern.

How are indoor ferns cared for?

Although the term “ferns” refers to a vast range of plants, most ferns cultivated as indoor plants require the same fundamental maintenance:

  • 1. Plant in soil that drains well. While ferns don’t care much about the type of soil they are in, consistently moist conditions are bad for their roots. Pick a well-draining potting mix when you pot up your fern plants.
  • 2. Set in a moderately lit area. Since ferns naturally grow beneath tree canopies, they like filtered or indirect light over direct sunshine. If you wish to place ferns near an east or west window, keep them a few feet away from the window to prevent scorching the leaves. Ferns do best in windows that face south or north. For ferns to flourish in your home, there is no requirement for strong lighting. Asparagus and maidenhair are two varieties that do well in low light.
  • 3. Keep the ground wet. Ferns thrive in soil that is regularly and equally moist because they are water-loving plants. If you notice that the top of the soil is beginning to feel dry, water your ferns thoroughly right away. While wet soil is good, avoid overwatering since it might harm the plant and promote a bacterial or fungal infection.
  • 4.Occasional mist. Ferns are a popular choice for terrarium cultivation since they enjoy the wetness in the air and require high humidity to thrive. If you see that the tips of your fern fronds are browning or if there isn’t much new growth, spritz them with a water bottle to keep them wet, or think about placing a humidifier close by. If spraying doesn’t work, think about moving your ferns into a location with higher humidity, such the kitchen or bathroom, and away from dry air.

Do ferns require a lot of sun exposure?

Shade. The majority of ferns thrive in dense or dappled shade. Rich, dark green foliage will result with adequate shade. Depending on where you are, we advise 65 to 75 percent shade.

Do indoor ferns require sunlight?

You’ll notice that your Fern grows happier and healthier when you put it in a location that provides the ideal amount of sunshine exposure for it.

If your plant receives indirect sunlight, it indicates that it does not receive any direct sunlight from a window.

Your plant will either suffer from burns or a warm environment if it is exposed to direct sunlight.

Your Fern should be placed in the centre of a room with a south or west facing window that is out of direct sunlight.

As this light is weaker, you can alternatively place your ferns in a room with a window that faces north or east.

If you possess an asparagus fern, take note: Your plant, which isn’t a fern at all, needs strong, direct sunshine to thrive.

Do I need to wet my fern?

All of the common house ferns can only withstand brief periods of dryness. They will start to drop leaves and their fronds will swiftly turn brown. As often as you can, ideally in the morning, mist your ferns. Your family members should be taught to use the spray bottle you always keep on hand whenever they pass the fern. Place the pot on a tray filled with moist pebbles or clay granules. This makes the area around the plant more humid without keeping the roots wet. Another choice is to put your ferns in the bathroom, which is typically the room in your house with the most humidity.

How come my fern is dying?

It usually happens when a fern drowns or the humidity is too low, which dehydrates the leaves and causes them to become brown and crispy. To prevent the leaves from turning brown and dying, indoor ferns need soil that is continually moist, and they like a humidity level of 50%.

The majority of indoor ferns, including Boston, Maidenhair, Birds Nest, Rabbit Foot, and Asparagus Ferns, are indigenous to tropical climates where they flourish in high humidity, continuously moist soil, cool, constant temperatures, and shaded areas under tree canopies.

It’s crucial to recreate the fern’s natural environment in order to bring it back to life. To do this, you should raise the humidity, put the fern in moist organic soil, and place it in a shaded spot with a consistent, moderately cool temperature.

Continue reading to find out the causes of your indoor and outdoor fern’s demise and how to put the answers into practice to bring it back to life.

What appearance does an overwatered fern have?

Although Boston fern needs slightly moist soil, soggy, waterlogged soil is more prone to cause rot and other fungal diseases. Yellowing or wilted leaves are frequently the first indication when a fern is overwatered.

Touching the dirt with the tip of your finger is a guaranteed technique to tell when to water a Boston fern. It’s time to water the plant if the soil’s surface feels a little bit dry. Another sign that a fern needs water is the weight of the pot. The pot will feel quite light if the soil is dry. Wait a few days before watering, then retest the soil.

Use water that is room temperature to thoroughly water the plant until the water flows through the bottom of the pot. Never let the pot stand in water and always allow the plant drain completely.

If you create a humid environment, Boston fern watering will be improved. A tray of wet stones is a more efficient approach to raise the humidity surrounding the plant than occasionally misting the fronds.

Set the pot on a layer of damp pebbles or gravel that has been spread out on a plate or tray. To keep the pebbles continually moist, add water as needed. Make sure the pot’s bottom doesn’t come in contact with water, as root rot can result from water leaking up through the drainage hole.

Should I remove my fern’s dead leaves?

Do your ferns appear wilted and worn out? I’ll demonstrate how simple it is to prune your ferns for a brand-new appearance and an even healthier plant.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, ferns are a particularly popular type of outdoor plant (PNW). They can be found thriving in the shade.

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Rather than leaves, ferns have fronds, which are only present for around a year. While the new fronds emerge, the older ones begin to wither and turn brown. Refreshing the plant by removing the old growth will give you only gorgeous new fronds.

Where to plant

The majority of ferns are woodland plants that prefer partial or mild shade. As long as they have access to enough moisture, they can typically endure some sun.

Ferns prefer soil that is rich in organic content, such leafmould or garden compost. A few require acidic conditions, while the majority prefer neutral to alkaline soil (see how to test your soil). Although some varieties may withstand either extremely wet or dry soil, they typically prefer sufficient of moisture but not waterlogging.

Where may a fern be hung most effectively?

The species of fern and the growing conditions may vary significantly, but most ferns don’t like direct sunshine. A fern in a hanging container outside will typically benefit from morning sunlight but requires shade in the afternoon.

In general, bright, indirect light, such as a location a few feet from a sunny window, is optimal for indoor ferns in hanging baskets. The ideal range is 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (15-21 C.).

The bathroom is a great place for hanging baskets of ferns because most ferns like humidity. If not, use a humidifier to raise the humidity in your house or sometimes sprinkle the plant with a tiny mist. Make sure your fern isn’t too close to an air conditioner, heating vent, or drafty door or window.

Are ferns suitable houseplants?

Experiencing garden withdrawal as winter approaches? Adding a few lush, green plants will eden-up your interior areas. As long as you give them the proper quantities of light and moisture, many ferns make fantastic, low-maintenance houseplants. To get you started, here are four of my favorites from Monrovia.

You may always purchase your favorites from Monrovia online with FREE delivery to Wallitsch, or stop by the store (just wear your mask)!

Should ferns be watered every day?

Given the diversity of fern species, it might be challenging to pinpoint how much water each one need. Most ferns love damp soil and are found naturally in wooded environments, many of which are tropical rain forests. That entails watering indoor plants before the dirt in their pots dries out. The fern’s size, rate of development, the potting medium it is planted in, the relative humidity in the house, and the temperature all affect how much and how often it has to be watered. A huge fern might need daily watering, whilst a little fern in a bathroom with high humidity would only need watering occasionally. Prior to the soil drying out, water the fern, but avoid getting the soil too wet. This means that the health of indoor ferns depends on proper drainage.