Asparagus Fern

Asparagus Setaceus

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Most light conditions
Drama queen
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It’s best not to touch ferns’ leaves too much. They don’t enjoy it and might turn brown in protest.

Quick facts

Botanical name

Asparagus setaceus


Asparagus fern; Lace fern; Ferny asparagus

Plant type

Evergreen climber, indoor

Air purifying


Plant height (including pot)


Pet/baby safe

Toxic if ingested

Nursery pot size


About asparagus ferns

This elegant little indoor plant is native to South Africa, where it grows in soft clumps in steamy forests. It lives in the partial shade of larger trees, stretching out its fine leaves. In the wild it will flower in the spring with little bell-shaped blooms that give way to small green berries. 

It’s not warm enough to grow it outside in the UK, but it makes a beautiful houseplant. Because it’s used to growing beneath other trees, it’s accustomed to anything from partial shade to bright, indirect light. It likes moist air that echoes its forest home, so regular misting is a good idea. It also loves a feed with liquid fertiliser once per month in spring and summer.

As it’s not keen on being touched very much, it’s a really good plant for a shelf, where it won’t be bothered. Its beauty is best enjoyed from a comfortable distance.

Did you know?

Despite the name, the asparagus fern is not actually a true fern. It was just given the name because it looks very...ferny.