Belle's Green House
Maidenhair ferns have delicate fan-shaped leaf segments, typically clustered on wiry black stems, and their leaves are smaller than other types of ferns. In addition to being one of the most popular fern houseplants, the maidenhair fern can also be found in nature, growing in places where other plants typically don't, like on rock walls and in between rock fissures where the moisture from water seepage keeps them alive. Though they are visually stunning throughout all stages of their growth, they are considered a slow-growing fern, typically taking up to three years to reach their full mature size.
Light: In their natural forest environment, maidenhair ferns are primarily covered by a canopy of trees, receiving a bit of shade and partial sunlight. To successfully grow the fern indoors, try and mimic these conditions by finding a spot in your home that receives indirect sunlight only. Avoid harsh light or direct rays, as the delicate leaves of the maidenhair fern can burn very easily. However, too little light leads to poor growth and yellowing fronds. Try to find a spot that receives indirect morning or afternoon sun, like a northern window. But be careful: this prima donna dislikes cold drafts!
Watering: Your best bet to ensure that your thirsty maidenhair fern thrives is to focus on giving it multiple water sources. Consistently moist soil is a great place to start—from there, be sure to water your fern regularly, either daily or every other day, never allowing the soil to dry out. Watch for yellow leaves that may occur from overwatering. Do not let the plant's roots stand in water. Moisture is vital--but drainage is important to avoid root rot.
Keep the fern in a plastic pot with holes, then place that plastic pot in a more attractive outer pot if you wish. This way, you can easily check on the moisture levels in the plastic pot, and the drainage holes will prevent the soil from becoming too soggy. To water, simply remove the plastic pot from the cache pot, water the plant over a sink until the water stops draining from the plastic pot, then replace in the cache pot.