Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The Magnificent Staghorn Fern

These were the new arrivals at a florist, which has a great selection of indoor plants. This is a magnificent and unusual fern. It's called a Staghorn fern because in a plant-like way, it resembles a pair of deer's antlers mounted on wall. Like the antlers of a deer, the fronds on this fern are coated with a downy softness. The ferns pictured here are youngsters but they can be mounted on a board or piece of wood and hung over your fireplace (if you have the right light) and they will flow gracefully over it. They can be a living alternative to antlers.

The unique Staghorn fern is epiphytic, meaning it naturally lives in trees. You can replicate that for them by planting them on a piece of fernbark, or wood with the instructions below. 

After you gently take a plant out its pot, center it on the piece you've chosen. Use wet sphagnum moss and apply generous clumps all around the rootball to mold a 'container' for them to grow in. Don't cover up the base frond, but do stuff some spaghnum moss just under and all around it. Using fishline, make several wraps with it around and under the board and over the spaghnum moss, but not over the base frond. That should keep the spaghnum moss in place. Put a hook in the top of your board and it is ready to hang up. It's best to take the piece down for watering and gently dowse it, when necessary, in the bathtub or shower and let drain for awhile.

The botanical name for Staghorn Ferns is Platycerium. Different species live in several places all around the world, from the Andes of Peru to Java, in Thailand, Australia and the tropics of Africa! 

You can send flowers and plants almost anywhere in the world from this florist, 

Care Instructions:
  • Bright indirect light, in front of a north-facing window, or a little direct sun is ok.
  • If the Staghorn fern is in a pot, water thoroughly as soon as the top of the soil is dry.
  • If it's mounted on wood, take it down when the sphagnum moss feels almost dried out, and water it in a tub or shower making sure you soak the entire root ball.
  • Loves some humidity. Mist daily.
  • Fertilize occasionally with fish emulsion, their favorite.    
**To see more indoor plants on this blog, click here: The Indoor Garden blog
***To watch short video clips on plant care from my 90's TV series, click below:
  The Indoor Garden TV



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