Can rabbit foot fern live in water?

Answered by Stephen Mosley

The rabbit foot fern (Davallia fejeensis) cannot live in water. This plant is an epiphytic fern, meaning it naturally grows on trees and rocks in the wild. It absorbs nutrients and moisture from the air and rain rather than relying on waterlogged soil.

If you attempt to grow the rabbit foot fern in water, the roots will likely rot and the plant will eventually die. It is crucial to provide well-draining soil for this fern, allowing excess water to escape and preventing the roots from sitting in damp conditions.

To ensure proper drainage, you can use a potting mix specifically designed for ferns or create your own mixture by combining peat moss, perlite, and sand. These materials will help create a well-draining environment for the fern’s roots.

In terms of temperature, the rabbit foot fern thrives in normal room temperatures of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 degrees Celsius). It is important to avoid exposing this fern to extreme temperature fluctuations or drafts, as it prefers consistent, moderate conditions.

While the rabbit foot fern may tolerate slightly lower or higher temperatures for short periods, it is best to keep it within its ideal temperature range for optimal growth.

In my personal experience, I have found that providing the rabbit foot fern with consistent moisture and proper drainage has led to healthy growth and vibrant foliage. I have seen the negative effects of overwatering or allowing the plant to sit in water, resulting in root rot and eventual decline. Therefore, it is essential to strike a balance between watering the fern enough to keep the soil slightly moist but not overly wet.

To summarize, the rabbit foot fern cannot live in water and requires well-draining soil to prevent root rot. It thrives in normal room temperatures around 70 degrees Fahrenheit and should be protected from extreme temperature fluctuations. By providing these optimal conditions, you can enjoy the beauty and lushness of this unique fern in your home or garden.