House Plant Care - Birds Nest Fern

House Plant Care - Birds Nest Fern

By Vijay Krishna

House Plant Care - Birds Nest Fern

Bird's nest fern scientifically called as Asplenium nidus is one of two tropical Asplenium species found in cultivation. Asplenium ferns are naturally epiphytic which means they grow on the surface of other plants. They can be found growing high in the crooks of trees in their rainforest homes.
These ferns are beautiful and many conservatories boast impressively large specimens. In outdoors, these ferns attach themselves to grow directly on a tree, especially if they can find a spot between branches. They get humidity from the tree and outside environment and shaded light from the branches and leaves of the tree.


The key to a healthy bird's nest fern is providing enough warmth and moisture while growing them indoors. Given these two conditions, the ferns can withstand higher light levels. One of the best places to put this plant is on a shower ledge or any edges of a bathroom nearer to the window, where it will get optimal humidity, warmth and ample lighting.


Bird’s nest fern can grow really quick if taken enough care. The new leaves will constantly emerge from the central area of the plant. Do not move or handle the new emerging fronds from the origin. They are extremely fragile, and if you touch them, they can be destroyed.
 
 
To Do: For Growth

These plants need filtered light to light shade. These are true jungle plants. Will thrive at more than 200 foot candles, but sometimes from 100 to 200 foot candles the plant will work. Don't expose to direct sun other than the very early morning sun. Placing the fern by an east or north facing window is ideal. Keep their compost moist. Avoid watering right into the nest as that encourages mold and rot. Water the soil rather than the plant. They thrive in humid environments such as the bathroom, a greenhouse, or a terrarium. You may also use humidifier in winters to keep them warm.

 

Soil Conditions


Plant the bird's nest fern in loose, rich organic compost or a peat-based potting mix. A mixture of two parts peat and one-part perlite would work really well. Otherwise, you can try any compositions of peat-based mixture with organic material.


During the growing season i.e, April through September, fertilize once in a month with a weak liquid fertilizer. Withhold any fertilizer during the winter, when most plants are in their resting phase. Too much food will cause deformed leaves and/or brown or yellow-spotted leaves. Don't put fertilizer pellets in the central cup or "nest."