Ferns are trending in 2016! Interior styles and fashions are moving away from colour, and greenery is taking centre stage — which suits us just fine, because nothing is easier than putting a fern in the middle of the table and calling it a centrepiece. So rest assured, growing an indoor Nephrolepis exaltata fern is one of the best decor moves you can make!
You may know the Nephrolepis exaltata by its more common names: Boston fern, sword fern or fishbone fern. It’s a very popular house plant, often grown in containers and most commonly found in hanging baskets. This dependable, easy-to-grow fern produces masses of long, narrow green leaves that arch and fall to create a soft, delicate indoor feature. They’re also perfect for sprucing up a bathroom, where they thrive and tolerate the high humidity.
Nephrolepis has recently been recognised as one of the top ‘air purifying’ plants. Recent studies have proven that indoor plants remove unwanted toxins from the air — and as such, ferns don’t only look good in your house, they ‘do’ good too!
Caring for your indoor Nephrolepis fern
- Position it in a bright light area without direct sunlight.
- Ferns can tolerate lower light areas for a few weeks at a time, but should then be rotated to ensure best growth.
- Normal room temperatures are suitable all year round, during summer and in extreme hot periods the plant will benefit from mist-spraying or stand the plant in water to increase humidity and re-create more natural growing conditions.
- Regular watering is required. This may vary between 2 to 3 times a week in summer, right down to once a week in winter.
- Ensure the roots never dry out!
Although you might want to grow your Nephrolepis fern in the garden, in South Africa they are classified as invader plants, which means you may no longer plant them. The hardy ferns tends to choke out indigenous species, and because they spread so easily, they’re a real threat to our ecosystem.