Q. I have a small, fluffy fern on my bathroom windowsill during summer. Now that it's fall, should I move it?
Since your fern has probably acclimated itself, I wouldn't move it. In addition, the bathroom humidity is beneficial for your fern.
However, if it starts to look poorly due to the much lower light of fall and winter, you should move your fern to a location with more light--eastern exposure, say. Although ferns like shady conditions, early morning winter light aids in their continuous growth. To keep the fern evenly shaped, give it a quarter turn every 2-3 days. This will enable all sides of the plant to receive light evenly.
If you do move your fern, then it may no longer have the humid environment it needs. To increase humidity, mist with a fine spray of tepid water or rain water. Spray above the plant about two feet away, creating a misty atmosphere. Do this 2-3 times a day as needed.
Normal room temperatures(65-75°F) are fine for your fern. Do not overwater; keep the soil evenly moist but never sopping. An easy way to water your fern is to stand the pot in a bowl and water the top of the mixture evenly until water appears in the bowl. Allow the remaining water to be absorbed before watering again. It is best to water in the morning or at least during the day.
Good drainage is necessary for ferns. Occasional organic leaf mold incorporated into the potting mixture is a treat (like chocolate) for them.
For tips on a variety of gardening topics, see our Plant Information Guides.
- Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service