How to Grow Golden Fern | Phlebodium aureum Care

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Last Updated: 19.10.2023

Golden Fern is a popular choice among fern enthusiasts and can be cultivated in indoor or outdoor gardens. Here’s how to grow them easily.

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Commonly known as “Blue Star Fern” or “Golden Polypody,” this fern species belongs to the family Polypodiaceae. Here is all the information about growing Golden Fern.


Golden Fern Information

This is an attractive fern with arching fronds that can reach a height of up to 2 feet and a spread of about 3 feet. The fronds are leathery and have a blue-green or greyish color with a golden hue, giving the plant its common name, “Golden Fern.”

Phlebodium aureum is native to tropical and subtropical regions of the Americas, including parts of Florida, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. Golden Ferns are non-toxic to humans and pets, making them a safe choice for households with animals.

Botanical Name: Phlebodium aureum

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How to Grow Golden Fern?

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Growing Golden Ferns from seeds can be a rewarding experience. All you need to do is take care that ferns generally have complex life cycles, and their seeds are tiny and delicate. Here are the general steps you can follow to grow Golden Fern from seeds:

  • Ferns reproduce through spores, typically found on the undersides of mature fronds. Locate mature fronds on a healthy Golden Fern and look for small, brownish spots or patches. These spots contain spores that are needed for propagation.
  • Cut or gently remove a few fronds with spore patches. Place the fronds in a paper bag and allow them to dry. As the fronds dry, the spores will be released into the bag.
  • Golden Fern spores require a specific growing medium to germinate. You can create a mix by combining equal parts peat moss and perlite or coarse sand to create a loose, well-draining substrate.
  • To prevent the growth of unwanted fungi or bacteria that could harm the delicate fern spores, sterilize the growing medium by heating it in an oven at a low temperature of around 93°C for about 30 minutes. Allow it to cool before using.
  • After sowing the spores, cover the container with a transparent lid or plastic wrap to create a mini greenhouse effect. This helps maintain high humidity, which is crucial for spore germination.
  • Once the tiny fern gametophytes start to appear, wait until they develop several leaves before transplanting them into individual pots with a suitable potting mix for ferns. Be very gentle during this process, as the young ferns are delicate.
  • As the Phlebodium aureum grows and matures, gradually acclimate them to lower humidity levels and brighter light to prepare them for the conditions they will experience in their permanent location.

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Requirements to Grow Golden Fern

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Sunlight

Golden Fern prefers bright, indirect light. While it can tolerate some shade, protecting it from direct sunlight is essential, especially during the hot afternoon hours.

Direct sunlight can scorch the fronds and cause damage to Phlebodium aureum.

Soil

The Golden Fern thrives in a well-draining, rich potting mix with good organic content. A mixture of peat moss, perlite or coarse sand, and some well-rotted compost works well.

It’s important to avoid heavy soils that retain too much moisture, as the fern prefers consistent moisture without being waterlogged.

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Water

These ferns are likely to be kept consistently moist but not soaking wet. Water the plant when the top inch of the soil feels dry to the touch. Avoid letting the soil dry out completely or become waterlogged, as both conditions can harm the plant.

Temperature

The ideal temperature range for Phlebodium aureum is between 15°C to 32°C. Phlebodium aureum can tolerate slightly cooler temperatures but is sensitive to frost and freezing conditions.


Golden Fern Care

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Fertilizer

During the growing season, typically spring and summer, you can feed the Golden Fern with a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted to half strength. Apply the fertilizer every two to four weeks to give the plant essential nutrients.

Pruning

Regular pruning is unnecessary for the Golden Fern, but you can remove any yellowed or damaged fronds to maintain its appearance. Use sharp scissors or pruning shears to make clean cuts at the base of the frond where it attaches to the main stem.

Pests and Diseases

Golden Ferns are generally resistant to pests and diseases. However, they can occasionally encounter issues like mealybugs, scale insects, or spider mites. If you notice any pests, isolate the affected plant and treat it with neem oil or insecticidal soap.

As for diseases, root rot can occur if the soil is too waterlogged. Ensure proper drainage and avoid overwatering to prevent this problem.

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