Feathery and Fairy-like, Maidenhair Fern’s ethereal foliage makes it worth the attention the plant requires. All things considered, Maidenhair Fern is not terribly hard to care for. Its main requirement is attention to keeping its soil consistently moist.
Maidenhair Fern, or Adiantum pedatum, needs bright indirect sunlight. It can also tolerate direct sun, but the stronger the sunlight, the greater its watering needs. As previously mentioned, proper watering is the key to a healthy and happy Maidenhair Fern. It prefers a humid atmosphere, but not because its foliage need moisture. Maidenhair Fern’s fronds are actually somewhat waterproof and shed water. In the case of this particular fern, humidity is needed to help keep the soil evenly moist. Because of the repellent nature of Maidenhair Fern’s leaves, there is no need to mist the plant’s fronds.
Plant Maidenhair Fern in a smaller pot than you might typically choose as it prefers to be snug and dislikes being repotted. Use a soil that will maintain moisture, but never let the soil become soggy. While Maidenhair Fern needs to be consistently moist, it is prone to Root Rot. When it comes to watering Maidenhair Fern, a Moisture Meter is the best way to keep track of the moisture level in the soil. When you first acquire the plant, check the soil daily and keep track of the length of time between waterings. This will help you to develop an idea of how long you can go between waterings (on average 2-3 day), but it’s still best practice to check the soil daily. To water Maidenhair Fern, follow the “Drench and Drain” method by allowing water to run over the soil for a few minutes and then allow the water to drain away completely.
Use a pot that has proper drainage holes for Maidenhair Fern. It’s also recommended that Plant Parents avoid pots that are bare ceramic or clay on the inside. These pots pull moisture away from the soil more quickly than pots that are glazed on the inside. If your pot is lined with bare ceramic or clay, use a plastic liner to help keep the soil away from the walls of the pot. Keeping Maidenhair Fern in a bathroom is a great way to help keep the soil moist due to the regular humidity in the air, and it can also make it easier to properly water the plant.
Don’t worry if you see the occasional frond brown and drop – think of it as the plant occasionally shedding fronds much in the same way that we occasionally shed hair. It is uncertain whether Maidenhair Fern specifically is pet safe, but most ferns typically are safe for pets. Maidenhair fern is, however, believed to be air cleaning. The Maidenhair species contains many variations, but most of them will do well following these guidelines. Because of the advanced watering requirements necessary to keep Maidenhair Fern happy, we recommend this plant to Intermediate Plant Parents.