The Jester Crown Fern goes by several names. Its scientific name is Nephrolepis exaltata, but you might know it as a Boston fern, Sunjester’s Crown, or Sword Fern (because of their many sword shaped leaves). This ancient plant can be found in Australia and New Guinea’s rainforests. It could even be one of the oldest plants on the planet.
The dense, sturdy, deep green fronds of the Jester Crown Fern arch out from the base. This indoor fern looks lovely on any tabletop or windowsill.
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It is critical to achieve the proper watering balance for the Jester Crown Fern. The soil should be moist but not saturated with water. Fungal diseases can develop in a waterlogged fern. Keep an eye out for yellowing leaves. This is an indication of overwatering. When the top three inches of soil are dry, thoroughly water the fern with room temperature water.
The most important aspect of watering this plant is to ensure that it is exposed to high levels of humidity.
Jester Crown Fern Light and Humidity Requirements
This fern houseplant requires a lot of indirect light. The fronds will quickly burn if exposed to direct sunlight. The fronds will become thin and weak in partial shade. The Jester Crown Fern’s closest buddy is humidity. Mist the fronds using a mister on a daily basis. This will aid the growth of your fern.
If you live in a dry climate, keep your fern in the bathroom, kitchen, or any place with high humidity. To make the environment more humid, you can also place other plants around the fern.
In extreme circumstances, set the fern houseplant atop a tray filled with water and pebbles. Allow the container to sit slightly above the water, rather than in it. The soil will absorb the water that evaporates and absorb the much-needed moisture.
Boston Fern Soil and Fertilizer Requirements
A swampy, soil-based potting mix is ideal for the Jester Crown Fern. Maintain a wet and well-drained soil. The Jester Crown Fern does not require as much fern fertilizer as other houseplants. A half-strength solution of standard indoor houseplant fertilizer is sufficient. Make sure to fertilize sparingly (fertilizing a couple of times a year is usually sufficient for a fern houseplant).
Pruning and Cleaning Requirements
Excessive dust might harm plant development, so use a light brush to dust the Jester Crown Fern on a regular basis. Routine pruning for discolored leaves can be performed anytime. Remember to remove the stem completely. Use a clean pair of clippers to cut the frond at the line of soil.
Severe pruning should be performed at least once a year. This encourages healthier, richer growth, allowing your plant to grow stronger with time.
Propagating the Jester Crown Fern is quite easy. Pull a healthy shoot out of the ground by giving it a gentle tug. Even if there aren’t any roots, it’s okay because they will grow quickly once the shoot is planted.
Put the shoot straight up in a pot containing a mix of peat and moist soil, and then give it a little water. Put the pot in a place where it can receive ample indirect sunlight. Placing a plastic bag on top can also help ensure a humid environment. Take this bag off once you can notice new growth.
Sword ferns need to be repotted to promote growth. In the wild, the jester’s crown ferns can grow 5-feet long fronds. Therefore, they outgrow their pots every few years. If your jester’s crown fern plant stops growing or its roots grow through the drainage hole, it’s time to repot it. Watering your plant a few days prior to repotting makes them easier to move.
Next, add 3-4 inches of fresh soil to your new pot. Ideally, your new container should be around 2 to 4 inches wide than the previous one. Too much space makes it more likely that the roots will rot.
After that, hold the fern with one hand while tilting the container with the other.
Carefully insert your fern into its new container. Fill the plant with potting soil and pat it down a few times to get rid of the air pockets. Water the fern plant well, and then move it to a spot where it will get indirect sunlight.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Jester’s Crown Fern
How Often Do You Water a Jesters Crown Fern?
If your Jesters crown fern plant is potted in a 5-inch pot and is receiving indirect sunlight it will require about 0.9 cups of water once a week. If you are facing extreme heat, you may need to water the fern more often.
How to Fertilize a Jesters Crown Fern?
Generally, potting soils come with a lot of nutrients that plants use to grow new roots.
By the time the plant has used up all the nutrients in the compost, it’s probably grown enough to need a bigger pot anyway.
To give this plant more nutrients, you should repot your Jesters Crown Fern each year or every time it doubles in size –whatever comes first.
Can the Jesters Crown Fern go Dormant?
Jesters Crown Fern tends to go dormant in the winters, and you may notice the plant’s growth slowing down during this period. Hence, it is important to increase the interval between each watering during this time.
Once it receives the right environment, the Jesters Crown Fern is a rather low-maintenance plant. If you take care of it, it can live for many years. For this reason, these plants flourish in almost every region of the earth. Ferns need a lot of water to be happy. Too much water can make the roots rot and the leaves turn yellow. If there is too much direct light, the fronds will get burned.
They don’t need much fertilizer for ferns and can rarely be attacked by pests. If you have a lot of pests, the best thing you can do is use strong neem oil. This ancient fern plant would be a lovely addition to any home.