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Propagating Ferns

The least expensive way to acquire new fern plants is to propagate them yourself. It isn’t difficult, once you know what to do.

The least expensive way to acquire new fern plants is to propagate them yourself. It isn’t difficult, once you know what to do.

Figure B

Many ferns, like the holly fern (Cyrtomium), multiply by dropping spores that form on the back side of the leaf into the dirt (Figure A). These spores are like seeds and create new plants.

Figure C

Some ferns, like a mother fern (Asplenium), form little plantlets on the fronds (Figure B). To propagate this type of fern, just snip one of the fronds that has a plantlet growing on it and place it on top of the soil in a small pot. Anchor the frond into the soil gently with a wire hook (a U-shaped piece of thin wire). Mist the frond and cover the pot with a plastic bag, making a tent that will hold in the moisture (Figure C). Place the pot in indirect sunlight.

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