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Platycerium are commonly called Staghorn or Elkhorn Fern due to their weirdly wonderful, unique, antler shaped leaves. They make fascinating specimen houseplants and look particularly effective as a hanging plant once the fronds get long enough to start trailing.


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How to care

Light: Bright, indirect light. Find the brightest spot you have, however, avoid direct sunlight.

Water: Allow the soil to begin to dry out before watering. Due to the hard shield leaves covering the plant root ball, it is best to water from below rather directly onto the leaves. Dunk the plant in water for 10-15 minutes (less in winter) and ensure there is adequate drainage. Don’t leave the plant sitting in water continually.

Temperature: Normal household temperatures 16-24°C, and always above 12°C. Avoid draughts. Humidity: These ferns prefer higher humidity levels where possible. Use a pebble tray or water surround to increase humidity. Ideal plants for kitchens and bathrooms.

Feed: Liquid fertiliser can be applied occasionally during the growing season.

Care Tip: The base of the plant is covered with round to heart-shaped, hard shield leaves. These shield fronds turn brown with age. This is a natural part of the plant development process and not a sign your plant is dying, they should not be removed. The antler leaves develop spores (a brown fuzz), again this is part of the natural life cycle of a Staghorn Fern and the spores should be left intact for a healthy plant. Height and Growth Rate: Ultimate height 0.5-1m. Slow growing.


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