Jester Crown Fern, Australian Sword Fern
Australian sword fern is a large, ground-dwelling or terrestrial fern which grows in rainforests upon rocks or in soil near lakes or streams native to northeastern Australia and New Guinea. It spreads slowly by rhizomes (below ground stems) and stolons (above ground lateral stems). The leaf stems or petioles are covered with sparse red-brown hair-like scales with pale margins and a few longer hairs. The fronds are evergreen, long and feather like, the leaflets have margins which are lightly scalloped. The fronds are upright to arching. Australian sword fern reproduces by spores or is easily divided to form new plants. Plant sword fern for the landscape in part sun to full shade in moist to well-drained soil. The more sun, the more moisture is required. They are frost sensitive and are killed to the ground by a few degrees of a freeze. However, they will return if the cold weather is not a prolonged freeze. Australian sword fern is easy to grow as a houseplant, provide bright to moderate light, evenly moist soil and high humidity for best growth.
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- Botanical Name: Nephrolepis obliterata
- USDA Zones: 9A, 9B, 10A, 10B, 11A, 11B
- Water: Moderate
- Exposure: Bright Shade, Mostly Shade, Shade
- Mature Height: 3'
- Mature Spread: 4'
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