Sword fern (Boston fern)

Botanical name:

Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’


A tropical fern with lush and graceful arching fronds with a ruffled appearance often used to provide a softening effect.


Originally a native of Florida, Central and South America, the Sword or Boston fern is one of the most popular ferns due to the lush green appearance with the graceful fronds making it the perfect choice to use on the edge of shelving in a humid or warm room with a fair bit of light and heat. Try to avoid having it near the radiators as they dislike it. They are quite demanding on their watering requirements, especially during the warmer periods of the year when they may need watering up to 3-4 times a week. Regular watering and monthly feeding will produce growing results you will be proud of. A real rewarding option when making a fern selection.

Supplied size:

Supplied in a 15cm nursery pot.
Plant size of 45cm tall, inclusive of the pot, and 60cm wide.
Will fit into a pot cover size of 16-18cm wide and 13cm deep. 

Growth habit:

Bushy/lush appearance with arching fronds. It can grow to a height of approx 60-70cm and a spread of up to 80cm-1m. 

Ideal conditions:

Bright and warm conditions, but no direct sunlight. They enjoy a humid environment, but it is not essential. To increase the humidity just place them in a tray with pebbles and keep that topped up with water.

Watering requirements:

Keep the soil moist around the roots at all times during the warmer times of the year and then reduce that when it cools down. Very important not to let it dry out completely.

Health concerns and benefits:

Non-toxic to humans and pets.
It is one of the top-rated plants for having strong air-purifying abilities by filtering airborne toxins and converting that to oxygen.

Known concerns:

Soft scale and mealybug insect generally evident when there is poor ventilation/air circulation in the room. Good ventilation is particularly important if the room is very warm. 

Any questions?

Please feel free to get in touch with us if you would like to explore further options in sizing; would like more advice on the plant or discuss any concerns regarding any issues you are having growing yours.

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