Sword Fern

Sunday, August 09, 2009

I have two pots of lush sword-shaped fronds ferns in my garden. One is light green with soft lacy fronds.

The other is apple-green with relatively tough fronds that drape gracefully down.



Sword fern is used as a common name for plants in the Nephrolepidaceae family. Although both ferns look different in their appearances, they have similar characteristics.


Firstly, they really enjoy the bright indirect sunlight at my front porch. Secondly, they like to have moist soil all the time, hence the need to water the plant daily.
As new fronds grow and mature, they will drape over older fronds beneath.


The older fronds will slowly turn brown and wither as they are not able to receive sunlight.



To keep the fern looking good, cut out dead/brown fronds which are at the bottom and as close to the base of the plant as possible.


To propagate sword fern, take a division of the roots and replant it in well-drained soil. Happy planting sword ferns!

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18 comments

  1. Those are some mighty impressive ferns! Huge! How much do you fertilize?

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  2. Stephanie, your ferns look green and luscious, very healthy. This is a good plant to have at home. Are the roots of this plant fibrous type or bulbs? Does it have flowers? What type of fertilizer is suitable? I can't seem to get my ferns grow more leaves.

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  3. OOoooo I love ferns! We have them growing in the woods here and some are as tall as I am! The ones I buy at the store for the porch won't survive the winter, which is a bummer. I'd bring them in, but the cats would eat them. O-well. Love that first fern you have. Gorgeous color!

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  4. AutumnBelle,NotSoAngryRedHead, the roots are fibrous type and has no flower. I have never put any fertiliser before.

    Beegirl, I think the condition of my hot and bright porch is so suitable for these two ferns.

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  5. Woww, they're really impressive!

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  6. oh yeah, I really am a fern lover, and I must say I've never seen the one in the first picture before, it looks amazing. for me it looks almost like a huge moss.

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  7. Steph, you never put any fertiliser to your ferns?... Now that's really something to get such a lovely looking ferns. Kakdah water our hanging ferns daily too... and occassionally feed them with poultry fertiliser pellets.
    Happy Ferning,
    ~bangchik

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  8. Your ferns look wonderful! I have a few potted ones. Love all your photos... glad you included the brown leaves also.

    Have a great gardening week!

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  9. Two beautiful growing ferns so well looked after. I love ferns with their fresh green appearance. These two are also very attractive looking and enhance any place.

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  10. I had a huge potted fern in my bathroom for along time. It seemed to like the moist in there, then all of a sudden it just lost all the green leafs.. pity though, I did really enjoy it.Might be me and my family got more dirty and didn`t take as many showers as normally ;)

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  11. Hi Steph, I've been on vacation so lots of reading to catch up...love these ferns! I too had a great big plant in my bathroom as they like the humidity but eventually died from rootbound and lack of feeding :(! I love a variety called 'asparagus fern'..very dainty and great for flower arranging.

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  12. Lynn, good to hear from you. Asparagus fern, I like this fern too!

    Bangchik, I have these two ferns for more than a year already, I am also surprised that the fern still growing well. Anyway, if need be, I would definitely give the plant some fertiliser :-)

    Kanak, Titania, Mia, Barry, Blurting, it is so good to know that you like green ferns too. The fern with the lacy fronds (in the first pic) often gets noticed by my visitors.

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  13. Hello, Steph. Great to see the sword fern.

    I grow mine on the trunks of my Canary Island palm trees. This is a soil-less method and gives the tree an attractive petticoat.

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  14. I love the green frilly one. Looks like a big green wig! I don't fool much with ferns. Birds always nest in them year round and end up killing them. Basically they are shelters for my birds, and I hate paying for them because i know the birds will kill them. I can't water them with nests in them :-(

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  15. The first one is so beautiful, very nice green fern. The Typhoon Etau slammed into Asia, are you guys affected?

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  16. VueJardin, thanks for your concern. The typhoon hit Taiwan and Japan quite badly. Fortunately, we are not affected.

    Dirt Princess, for mine, sometimes when lizard falls from the porch ceiling, they would break some of the fronds :-)

    Prospero, that's a good idea. I do notice wild sword ferns grow on leaf bases of palms here.

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  17. The fibers paired with the ferns are AMAZING! I love the birds nest as well.

    Can't wait to FOLLOW you on BLogger!

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  18. What a beautiful looking ferns you have. I thought it was called: Fluffy Ruffle Fern.

    I have few pots of those and they often end up drying like that when the overgrow. But its best to put them where it rains a lot - they truly make a lushful look.

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