The leaves of the Ostrich Fern stick straight up vertically resembling the plumage of a bird which is where it gets its name from. This fern can tolerate cooler regions compared to some of its relatives and can be a perfect addition to your garden, as long as you don’t let it grow out of control.
Ostrich Fern Care Guide
Coming from temperate conditions, the Ostrich Fern makes a great outdoor plant which can give depth to a garden or wooded area. But due to the increasing demand for ferns all around it is also becoming a houseplant.
Because of this we have broken our care guide into outdoor care and indoor care, so that no matter how you want to keep your Fern, you’ll be able to provide the best conditions for it. So let’s look at how to care for an Ostrich Fern.
Ostrich Fern Outdoor Care
It’s more common to find people growing Ostrich Ferns outdoors either added to a garden or a wooded area where they can thrive in shady patches.
Ostrich Fern Planting Location
When choosing a spot for this plant in your garden you want to find somewhere that is quite shady and protected from direct sunlight. Which is as most plants need to receive a lot of sun, an Ostrich Fern will fill up the spaces in your garden that sun doesn’t reach as much.
Try to keep it out of direct sunlight as if the plant receives too much sun you will notice scorching on the leaves.
Ostrich Ferns growing conditions require this plant to be kept in ground that’s relatively moist. If you live in a region that receives a lot of rainfall you probably won’t need to water your Ostrich Fern. However if you find that in the summer the ground becomes a lot drier then don’t hesitate to water the Earth around your Fern.
As these Ferns do well in North America and northern Europe and Asia if you live in these regions then the ferns should do just fine. You might find that they die back in the winter but they will grow in abundance in the spring time. If you live closer to the equator then your fern might struggle and you may want to consider a different type.
Ostrich Fern Indoor Care
Choosing this plant as a houseplant isn’t as common but as ferns are becoming more popular anything is possible. So we’ve included a further guide on how to keep this as a houseplant rather than adding it to your garden.
As an Ostrich Fern doesn’t like to be kept in direct sunlight, you should opt for a shadier spot in your home. A west or east facing windowsill should do or pick a spot in a south facing room that is further away from the window.
Ostrich Fern Watering
These plants like it moist, so make sure you water them regularly. They might need less watering during the winter months but this might not be the case if the air in your house is hot and dry.
Ostrich Fern Humidity Needs
Ferns prefer a moister air so humidifiers and misters are a great answer to this. You can keep your fern in a room with a humidifier and the fern should receive the moisture that it requires. If you don’t have a humidifier then simply mist your fern every other day and it should be fine.
Like most ferns, this one doesn’t need too much fertilising as this can cause burning on the tips of the leaves. Use fertiliser sparingly and when you do make sure you dilute so the concentration isn’t as strong. Ostrich Ferns are fast growing plants anyway so you shouldn’t need to use too much fertiliser in order to see some serious growth.
Ostrich fern plants can be propagated by dividing the crowns, making sure you don’t damage them in the process.
So to summarise your Ostrich Fern requires:
- Partial to strong shade
- Regular watering
- Little fertiliser
- Humid environment
Ostrich Fern FAQ
Now that you’ve read up on Ostrich Fern care, take a look at some of the frequently asked questions to ensure you’re doing all you can for your fern.
Are Ostrich Ferns invasive?
Ostrich Ferns can be invasive. They grow very quickly and can soon overrun an area that was once full of a diverse range of plants and flowers. If you are planning on planting Ostrich Ferns make sure you do so in an area that can be controlled to prevent them from taking over.
Do Ostrich Ferns die back in winter?
If the weather is cold and harsh enough then you will find that your ferns die back in winter but don’t worry because come spring time they’ll be back and they’ll grow so quickly its as if they never went away.
Will Ostrich Ferns grow in sun?
This plant will grow between in a shady area rather than a spot that receives full sun which makes them perfect plants for bottom dwelling. If you have a spot close to the ground that doesn’t receive too much light this is where you want to plant your Ostrich Fern to fill your garden and to promote the best growth.
Do Ostrich Ferns spread?
Yes. Just like we mentioned above about them being potentially invasive, Ostrich Ferns spread very quickly so be aware of this if you are introducing them into an area and don’t let them take over.
What is an Ostrich Fern height?
An Ostrich fern will grow to about 3 to 6 feet in height, giving it a bushy like appearance and making it perfect for filling out areas of your garden that are closer to the ground.
If you have any other questions about this plant then be sure to let us know in the comments below and we’ll do our best to help you with your fern needs.