Common Name: Victoria Fern, Lady Fern 'Victoria'
Botanical Name: Athyrium filix-femina 'Victoriae'
The wavy ripples undulating down the length of the Victoria Lady Fern's fronds are like the remnants of a yacht's wake as it glides on calm seas, and the negative space gives your eyes room to appreciate this plant's intricacies. This indoor plant does require more humidity and water than other less sensitive houseplants. Still, its beauty and air-purifying qualities make this plant well worth the extra time and devotion. Learn how to care for your Victoria Fern with these easy-to-follow care tips!
Most people assume ferns thrive in the shadows, but these houseplants need some light, so don't hide these misunderstood indoor plants in dark corners! Medium, indirect dappled light will bring out the best in them (picture them under a thick canopy of trees on a sunny day). Avoid direct sunlight, especially in the summer when the sun's rays are intense! The less light your Victoria Fern receives, the slower they will grow, and they may become leggy and thin. If you see this happening, immediately relocate your Victoria Fern to a brighter spot! Learn more about what light is right for your indoor plants!
Victoria Ferns need constant moisture, but don't let them sit in standing water; you will regret it! Only certain types of wetland Victoria Ferns can live in that environment, and ours are not those types! More importantly, do not neglect to water your ferns. When that happens, you will find a dying Victoria Fern surrounded by a ring of brown, crunchy leaves. Try this little trick if you are unsure how often to water your ferns. Water frequently, but lightly. Instead of soaking your Victoria Ferns once a week or whenever you water your plants. Give them a little bit every few days, or just enough to keep the soil moist but not soggy. If the watering riddle still has you scratching your head, consider planting your Victoria Ferns into self-watering planters, and don't forget to fill the planters when they dry out! The onus falls on you to ensure that their delicate fronds get the water they need to frond on!
The soil composition is critical when it comes to growing Victoria Ferns! They need a soil medium that can retain moisture but still drain excess water to avoid the roots from rotting (not a pretty sight!). Most pre-mixed soils will suffice. Make sure that there is plenty of organic matter, like coco-coir, peat moss, or shredded leaves, and avoid soil containing moisture retaining crystals. If your soil drains too quickly, we recommend re-potting your fern into a compost-rich soil mixture. Learn how to create your own universal soil mixture for all of your indoor plants!
Victoria Ferns adapt quickly to most household temperatures. They prefer to live in cooler temps but can withstand temperatures into the 90's. They'll just need more water and shade during a heatwave. When the temperatures are hot and stagnant, we recommend using a fan to provide good air circulation! Moving air helps keep pests and diseases, and fungus away!
Humidity is a M-U-S-T to keep your Victoria Fern strong and vigorous! If you think about the tropical rain forests where they naturally grow, it's easy to understand why. A humidifier will be the best solution to raise the humidity in your home during the cold months when the forced-air heat is cranking and dries out the air. We do not recommend misting your Victoria Ferns -- or any plants --as a source of humidity. You would have to be misting all day for that to happen!. Misting does almost nothing to help raise the humidity for your plants, even though it feels therapeutic and relaxing to do! A stylish and practical way to increase the humidity in a small area is to place the Victoria Ferns on a tray filled with pebbles and water so the evaporating moisture can reach the foliage. Learn how to increase humidity around your indoor plants!
Feed your Victoria Ferns with a ¼-diluted complete liquid fertilizer twice a month during the growing season. You can add organic compost, worm castings, or a slow-release fertilizer. Keep in mind that Victoria Ferns are sensitive to being over-fertilized, so always dilute any concentrated fertilizer before applying it! Do not feed during the winter or in the colder months.
Victoria Fern are epiphytic plants, which means they grow on top of other plants. They may be seen growing high in the bends of trees in their rain forest habitat. They emerge from a central rosette in a succession of tall, spoon-shaped, brilliant green fronds. Healthy plants can have leaves up to 5 feet long. However, fronds on Victoria Ferns grown as houseplants are usually only around 2’ high. The growth rate of these ferns is moderate.
Pet Friend or Foe
The Victoria Fern is non-toxic to pets! friend.
- Only fertilize your indoor plants after you've saturated the soil with water; this avoids burning the roots and foliage.
- Group Victoria Ferns together to make caring for them easier.
- Leave your Victoria Ferns in the grow pots or plant in nonporous pots as this helps keep their soil moist.
- Indoor Victoria Ferns can become root-bound which leads to stunted growth. Re-pot your Victoria Ferns into a container that is 2" wider in diameter, using organic-rich soil when re-potting them!
- A great time to divide your Victoria Ferns is when you are re-potting them; take a sharp sterilized knife and carefully slice the root ball in half, and plant each division into their own new pots!
- Try placing a Victoria Fern potted in a terra-cotta pot into a larger ceramic pot. Place moistened moss between the inner terra-cotta pot and the outer ceramic pot. The moistened moss will help slow down the terra-cotta pot from wicking away the moisture from the Victoria Fern's soil.
- Lower leaf drop is common for Victoria Ferns, wait until the leaves have turned brown and gently remove them by hand!