Maidenhair Fern Cultivation
Adiantum species

American and southern maidenhair fern cultivation and fertilizing needs. Growing these fabulous ferns as house plants. Adiantum pedatum, Adiantum capillus-veneris and others.

Discover an easy way to grow your own food!

Adiantums are among the daintiest of fern varieties with their thin black stems and delicate leaves.

There are about 200 members of this fern species.  Some hail from the tropics and others are quite cold hardy.

I am only going to mention a few of the most well known on this page.


The Maidenhair as an Indoor Fern

Two different types of maidenhair ferns.

Maidenhair ferns can be somewhat difficult to keep indoors due to their need for humidity. They also dislike having their leaves sprayed so misting them won't usually work.

A terrarium is the perfect environment for them. Whatever you do, do, keep them away from heat vents during the winter.

They want light but can't cope with direct sun.

The tropical types should be kept above 59 degrees F. year round. If you are unsure which species you have, treat your fern like a tropical, just to be safe.

Watering Ferns

Water these ferns with soft water. If they dry out, the beautiful fronds will turn brown very quickly.

If you forget and the peat moss becomes a little too dry, immerse the pot in a pail of room temperature water for an hour or two until you are sure it is moist all the way through. Then drain the excess away.

Keep them moist during warm weather and a bit less so in the winter, unless you keep a very warm house.

Feeding Ferns

Use a balanced (8-8-8 or 10-8-6 or something similar) liquid fertilizer which contains iron, copper, zinc, and boron. It can contain other minor nutrients, as well, but these are the most important.

Mix the fertilizer up at half strength, and use it to water the ferns every two weeks from spring to fall.

Potted ferns should be repotted every other spring. If they are getting too large, or you wish to give one to a friend, they can be divided at this time.


Maidenhair Species

Adiantum pedatum

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This is the cold hardy American maidenhair fern. Click the headline to learn about its care and what to do if it gets brown spots on its leaves.

Adiantum capillus-veneris

The southern maidenhair fern, Adiantum capillus-veneris, is much more tender than the northern or American maidenhair.

Adiantum Raddianum Fragrans (Maidenhair Fern)
Adiantum raddianum fragrans
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The leaves of Adiantum raddianum exhibit a weeping growth habit and look good in romantic flower arrangements. Some varieties of this species are variegated.

Adiantum caudatum has a cascading form which looks marvelous spilling from baskets.

The leaves of Adiantum raddianum exhibit a weeping growth habit and look good in romantic flower arrangements. Some varieties of this species are variegated. Adiantum caudatum has a cascading form which looks marvelous spilling from baskets.

Close-Up of a Rough Maidenhair (Adiantum Hispidulum)
Adiantum hispidulum
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Adiantum hispidulum, the rough or rosy maidenhair is the most robust and least demanding of all. It would be the easiest one to cultivate indoors.

It grows to a height of 18 inches.



Other Kinds of Ferns

Japanese Painted Fern a.k.a. Ghost Fern

Cinnamon Fern, Osmunda cinnamomea

Ostrich Fern Facts

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