Complete guide to silver lace fern care
Breathe new life into your home with the fabulous fronds of silver lace fern.
Pteris straminea, also known as the silver lace fern but we call it Stanley, is a beautiful indoor fern that’s popular for its delicate fronds and easy-care attitude. This fern is native to tropical regions of South East Asia and the Pacific, and it can be a stunning addition to your fern collection. Here’s the top tips for caring for your fern:
- Keep its soil well-drained, but slightly moist
- It’s not that fussy when it comes to light, but the best spot is in indirect sunlight
- Give it a spritz with a mister every few days
About silver lace ferns
The name pteris comes from the Greek word for ‘feather’ and when you look at its delicate fronds you can see why. There’s a lot of different species (over 300 in fact), but the silver lace fern is an unusual variety. Though its slender fronds and palm-like foliage give it a more upright structure than other ferns, they have very similar needs.
How much light does my silver lace fern need?
A pteris straminea prefers bright, indirect light, but it will do just fine in partial shade. It just needs some natural life. Try to avoid placing it in direct sunlight, as this can cause the leaves to burn. You’ll know if the fern isn’t getting enough light as the leaves may start to turn yellow or brown. If that’s the case, try moving it to a brighter spot.
How often should I water my silver lace fern?
Your pteris straminea will prefer consistently moist soil. Water the plant thoroughly, then let the top inch of soil dry out before watering again. Be careful not to overwater, as this can cause root rot. If the soil is too wet, you might notice yellowing or wilting of the leaves, so cut back on the watering. In general, you can water once a week, but it’s best to check the soil first with the finger dip test.
Does my silver lace fern need a humid environment?
The pteris straminea loves humidity, so recreate the rainforest for your plant by placing a tray of water nearby, misting regularly or using a humidifier. Another option is popping your fern in a humid bathroom so it can soak up the steam - as long as it has enough natural light, it will be quite happy.
What’s the best temperature for my silver lace fern?
Your pteris straminea prefers temperatures between 16°C to 24°C, so if you’re feeling comfortable then your plant will too. Try to avoid exposing your plant to sudden temperature changes, like cool draughty spots or next to a warm radiator.
What’s the best soil for my silver lace fern?
You don’t need to worry about repotting your fern straight away, the soil it comes in will be just right. When you decide to repot, your pteris straminea will prefer a well-draining soil that’s rich in organic matter. You can use a standard potting mix. Make sure that the soil is loose and well-aerated, if it’s too compacted water will struggle to drain through and your plant might develop root rot.
Should I fertilise my silver lace fern?
Your pteris straminea doesn’t need feeding very often.Use a slow-release fertiliser once every three months during the growing season (spring and summer) to give it a nutrient boost. Follow the instructions on the fertiliser packaging and avoid over-fertilising, as this can damage the plant.
Should I prune my silver lace fern?
A pteris straminea doesn’t need regular pruning, but trim off any yellow or brown leaves or fronds with clean sharp scissors to keep your fern looking smart.
Caring for a pteris straminea is pretty straightforward and with a little bit of love your fern will continue to look fabulous in your home.
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