Information about the American maidenhair fern. Care of Adiantum pedatum ferns. What to do about the brown spots that form on the undersides of the fronds.
The frilly leaves of the American maidenhair fern are arranged opposite one another along curving, wiry black stems. The plant holds its fronds horizontally and grows slowly to a height and spread of 2 or 3 feet.
A shady location is preferred outdoors. Add organic matter to the soil in the planting area to make it more moisture retentive and water regularly.
Outdoor American maidenhair ferns are hardy from USDA zone 3 to zone 8.
Indoor ferns will need bright light--but no direct sun--and high humidity. A lit terrarium would be ideal.
Keep it away from children as the foliage will bruise and turn black if it is handled much.
Keep it moist but don't let it sit in water.
The American maidenhair will give its best indoor performance when situated in a cool room (about 60 degrees F. at night) and kept out of drafts.
These are spores. Your fern is simply trying to reproduce. It's nothing to worry about.
Brown leaf tips are another matter altogether. These signify that the air around your fern is not humid enough. Set its pot on a tray of pebbles which is kept constantly wet and spritz it often.
Southern Maidenhair Fern
The southern maidenhair fern, Adiantm capillus-veneris (also called the common maidenhair fern) is so called because it is more tender than the northern or American maidenhair fern.
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