Asparagus Fern is adaptable in terms of care and use. Bright green feathery foliage has a lacey appearance for an ethereal look. This easy-care stunner can grow outdoors or indoors. Although, it is considered invasive as a landscape plant in many areas. Learn all about Asparagus Fern care to help your plant thrive.
Types of Asparagus Fern
Several species exist within the Asparagus genera, although two are the most common: Asparagus densiflorus and Asparagus aethiopicus. Both species can grow outdoors or inside and have similar care needs; for what it’s worth, neither is an actual fern. These plants are part of the Asparagaceae family, making them distantly related to Ponytail Palms, Spider Plants, and the same asparagus you find at the grocery store.
Some of the most common Asparagus Fern varieties include:
- Asparagus asparagoides ‘Smilax’
- Asparagus densiflorus ‘Myer’ (also known as Foxtail Fern)
- Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri’ (also known as Asparagus Emerald Fern)
- Asparagus densiflorus ‘Sprengeri Compacta’
- Asparagus plumosus ‘Nana’
Outdoor plants have different care needs, and this article aims to cover Asparagus Fern care for plants grown indoors.
The frond-like growth of the Asparagus Fern are branchlets or cladodes, which are leafless stems that serve the plant in photosynthesis. The actual leaves are found on the base of the cladodes and have a scale-like appearance. It’s a subtle detail, but the feathery greenery is neither a frond nor a leaf, but it’s still lovely and charming.
Asparagus Fern Light Requirements
Place Asparagus Fern in a spot that receives bright, indirect sunlight. Direct light will burn the delicate growth. Position the plant a few feet away from a south-facing window or near an east- or west-facing window. Spin the pot a quarter turn each time you water for even light and excellent Asparagus Fern care.
Asparagus Ferns like damp but never soggy conditions. Water when the top couple of inches of the soil are dry. Try to avoid underwatering the plant, but drooping stems or brown growth indicates the plant needs more water. When needed, water the plant until excess water drains through the drainage holes, completely saturating the soil.
Loose, moist, well-drained soil is necessary for good Asparagus Fern care. Drainage is key because these plants like moisture but do not like wet feet. Rich soil or a potting mix for houseplants will work well.
Asparagus Ferns like temperatures around 70° F, but anything between 60° to 80° F is suitable. Keep Asparagus Fern away from heating or cooling vents because temperature fluctuations can cause the feathery stems to drop.
Asparagus Ferns will thrive in an outdoor space during the summer if the plant is not exposed to direct sunlight or cold temperatures. Anything below 55° F is potentially harmful because these plants cannot handle chilly weather.
Asparagus Fern Humidity
High humidity is a must-have for Asparagus Fern care. A naturally humid environment, like a bathroom or kitchen, is a good fit for these feathery beauties. Help your plant thrive in a dry environment using a pebble tray with water or a humidifier.
Asparagus Fern Fertilizer
Fertilize Asparagus Fern using a water-soluble, balanced plant food. Water the plant before applying fertilizer to avoid burning the roots. The extra dose of nutrition helps the plants, but Asparagus Ferns are not heavy feeders, and monthly fertilizer applications during the spring and summer are enough to support growth.
Do Asparagus Ferns Bloom?
As is common with most plants, Asparagus Fern only blooms as a landscape plant. Houseplants rarely bloom. Asparagus Ferns set small white flowers that are not very showy.
Pruning Asparagus Fern
Asparagus Ferns are fast-growing plants, so regular trims help them look neat and tidy. Remove dry or damaged growth as it appears. Trim the length or thin the stems in the spring when possible.
When to Repot Asparagus Fern
Repotting is an important part of Asparagus Fern care because it is a fast-growing plant that will quickly outgrow its container with proper care. Roots poking through the drainage holes or slow growth are signs the plant is becoming rootbound but don’t wait to repot. The aggressive, fast-growing roots of Asparagus Ferns have been known to break pots if left to become crowded. Asparagus Fern is one plant you do not want to let become root bound.
Asparagus Fern Propagation
Expand your Asparagus Fern collection through division. Separate the root ball into multiple smaller plants and pot each new plant in a container one to two inches larger than the root ball.
Is Asparagus Fern Pet Friendly?
Asparagus Fern is toxic to humans and pets, which is an unexpected twist since this plant is related to the edible vegetable. Asparagus Fern is moderately toxic, so eating the plant is not likely to be fatal, but it will cause your dog or cat to fall ill. Be careful introducing this plant into your home, especially if you have a curious cat likely to be interested in the feathery greenery.
Asparagus Fern Styling Tips
The unique greenery is almost whimsical, making Asparagus Fern a one-of-a-kind houseplant. Asparagus Ferns have a mounded upright growth habit, and as the stems become longer, they will arch and trail. Upright plants add visual interest and texture to an entryway or console table while trailing plants look beautiful in a basket or hanging planter.
Asparagus Fern Care Tips
Humidity is essential to proper Asparagus Fern care, but otherwise, this laid-back houseplant is easy to grow. Asparagus Fern is not as popular as many other houseplants, and that’s a shame because this beauty makes a lovely addition to most spaces.