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Birds Nest Fern

SCENTIFIC NAME: Asplenium nidus

KNOWN AS: Crow's Nest Fern, Nest Fern, Elkhorn Fern

CLIMATE (LOCATION): Asia & Australia | Tropical

DESCRIPTION: The Birds Nest Fern is a type of fern with unique leaves that look like a bird's nest. It is a popular choice for an indoor plant because it doesn't need much care and can grow well with little light.

Easy difficulty & pet safe

Birds Nest Fern Plant Care

Lighting

Light Requirement: High Light (Bright Indirect Light); Low Light Tolerant

Bright, indirect light is best for indoor cultivation of Birds Nest Ferns. These ferns are suitable for locations away from direct sunshine because they flourish in low to medium, indirect light. Put them next to windows that face north or east so they can get enough of bright, filtered light. They shouldn't be exposed to direct sunlight because it will damage their fragile fronds. You can use LED grow lights to augment natural lighting if needed.

Watering

Quick Tip: Water until water comes out of drainage holes. Allow top 2 inches of soil to completely dry between waterings.

Bird's Nest Ferns prefer consistently moist but well-draining soil when grown indoors. It's essential to avoid overwatering, as this can lead to root rot. Water the plant when the top inch of soil is dry, and ensure the water drains freely from the pot. Discard any excess water in the saucer to prevent the plant from sitting in standing water. Avoid letting the soil completely dry out between watering, as this can lead to leaf drop and plant stress. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the watering schedule as needed to ensure optimal health and growth.

Temperature

Preferred Temperature: 60º - 75º

Bird's Nest Ferns prefer moderate to warm temperatures when grown indoors, ideally between 60-75°F (15-24°C). They can tolerate slightly cooler temperatures but are sensitive to cold drafts and sudden temperature changes. Avoid placing them near cold windows or in areas with fluctuating temperatures, such as near doors or heating vents. They also prefer high humidity levels, so it's essential to maintain proper humidity levels between 50-80%. If the air is too dry, mist the leaves regularly or use a humidifier to maintain proper humidity levels. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the temperature and humidity levels as needed to ensure optimal health.

Humidity

Preferred Humidity: 50 - 80%; Moderate/High Humidity

Bird's Nest Ferns prefer high humidity levels when grown indoors, ideally between 50-80%. They can tolerate lower humidity levels, but it can lead to dry and crispy leaves, so moist is better. To increase humidity levels, mist the leaves regularly or place a tray of water near the plant. You can also use a humidifier to maintain proper humidity levels. It's essential to avoid placing the plant near cold windows or in areas with fluctuating temperatures, as this can lead to decreased humidity levels. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the humidity levels as needed to ensure optimal health and growth. If you are unsure what your humidity level is in any given room consider using a hygrometer.

Additional Plant Care

Propagation
Bird's Nest Ferns can be propagated through division or spores when grown indoors. To propagate through division, remove the plant from its pot and gently separate the roots into smaller sections, making sure each section has a good amount of roots and leaves. Repot the divisions into separate pots with fresh potting soil and water thoroughly. To propagate through spores, wait until the spores have developed on the underside of mature fronds and collect them in a plastic bag. Sow the spores onto a moist, sterile growing medium and cover them with plastic to maintain humidity. Place the container in a warm, bright area with indirect light and mist the soil regularly. Wait until the new plants have developed several fronds before transplanting them into their own pots. Monitor the new plants' growth and adjust the care as needed to ensure optimal health and growth.
Toxicity
Birds Nest Fern plants are considered non-toxic to humans and pets and are safe to have in homes with children and animals. The plant is not known to cause any adverse reactions if ingested, although it's still important to keep the plant out of reach of pets who may be prone to chewing on plants.
Repotting
Bird's Nest Ferns should be repotted every 1-2 years or when the pot becomes too small for the plant's root system. To repot, gently remove the plant from its current pot and carefully loosen any tangled roots. Select a pot that is 1-2 inches larger in diameter than the current pot and has drainage holes. Add a layer of fresh, well-draining potting soil to the bottom of the pot and place the plant in the center. Fill the pot with soil, making sure the soil level is at the same height as the plant's previous pot. Gently press the soil down around the plant and water thoroughly. It's also a good idea to remove any brown or damaged fronds during repotting to encourage new growth. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the care as needed to ensure optimal health and growth.
Pruning
Bird's Nest Ferns don't require much pruning when grown indoors, but occasional maintenance can help the plant stay healthy and good-looking. Prune away any brown or damaged fronds as soon as possible to encourage new growth. Use clean, sharp scissors or pruning shears to make a clean cut at the base of the frond where it meets the main stem. Avoid removing more than one-third of the plant's fronds at once, as this can stress the plant. It's also important to avoid pruning away any healthy green fronds, as this can harm the plant's ability to produce energy through photosynthesis, this is how they eat! Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the pruning schedule as needed to ensure optimal health and curb appeal.
Fertilizer
Bird's Nest Ferns benefit from regular fertilization when grown indoors to encourage healthy growth and vibrant foliage. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer). Dilute the fertilizer to half-strength and apply it to the soil every 2-4 weeks, following the manufacturer's instructions. Avoid fertilizing during the dormant season (fall and winter), as the plant's growth slows down during this time, and your plant will not be able to use all the fertilizer! Over-fertilization can lead to leaf burn and plant stress, so it's essential to follow the recommended dosage and frequency. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the fertilization schedule as needed to ensure optimal health.
Soil
Bird's Nest Ferns prefer well-draining soil with high organic matter when grown indoors. A good potting mix for these ferns should consist of equal parts peat moss, perlite, and coarse sand. This type of soil allows for proper drainage and aeration, which helps prevent root rot and fungal diseases. It's also important to avoid using soil that is too compact or heavy, as this can lead to improper drainage and soil compaction. Avoid using soil that contains high levels of lime or other alkaline materials, as these can harm the fern's sensitive roots. Monitor the plant's growth and adjust the soil conditions as needed to ensure optimal health.
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Hanging Heights

Birds Nest Fern Lighting Requirements: High Light (Bright Indirect Light); Low Light Tolerant

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