Every one of you must love palm trees and be fond of enjoying the golden beach lightened with the dappled palm trees. This article is going to highlight the ways through which you can brighten your indoor walls through the palm trees just like the golden beaches. Actiniopteris australis commonly known as eyelash fern is a small version of a palm tree that can brighten your homes with its beautiful lime green to dark green leaves. The leaves are similar to a bale of eyelashes originating from a single base. This is the reason it is widely known as eyelash fern. Anyone of you interested in illuminating your houses with this fern must read the full article.
Classification of Eyelash Fern
This genus of fern belonging to the Pteridaceae family is widespread in Australia, Africa, and Southeast Asia. This genus possesses 5 species that are similar to each other and it is difficult to distinguish between these species.
The majority of them love arid and warm climates on shady surfaces and rocks. These plants possess spectacular texture and foliage which make them popular for ornamental purposes.
Origin and Prevalence
It is principally present in Mauritius and also adorns the tropical regions including Madagascar, India, Nepal, Arabia, Burma, Sri Lanka, Australia, and Iran.
Features of the Eyelash Fern Plant
Leaves and stem
This plant possesses lime green to dark green leaves and has various smooth textured fronds on the surface of leaves. The stunning leaves are fan-shaped and radiate in an outward direction from the central base just like the eyelashes of humans, therefore, it is named eyelash fern.
These fabulous leaves are supported by herbaceous stems that are slender and soft. And all stems of this plant raise straight in an outward direction.
The maximum height of this mini palm tree is 8 inches and it achieves maturity at only 15 centimeters. This compact size makes it an ideal choice as an indoor plant.
You can use this plant for embellishing any corner of your house ranging from bedside and lounge to the corner of the drawing-room. The compact evergreen eyelash fern enhances the freshness and cleanliness within the area that is decorated through this plant.
The Eyelash fern belongs to an evergreen community. The fern is immune to the autumn season and stays lush green and fresh throughout the year. And it never sheds all of its fronds rather only sheds its leaves when they become old and dry.
The eyelash fern just like its delicate texture also possesses caring nature. It takes care of its owner by purifying the surrounding air. Since the fern plays an important role in removing the toxins and providing a fresh and clean environment.
The plant loves a warm and moist environment. These tropical plants are not capable of tolerating freezing temperature as frosting temperature is devastating for them. While on the other hand, a temperature higher than room temperature also burns the leaves of this plant.
High humidity is always the favorite of tropical plants. Similarly, eyelash fern loves the humid and moist environment. They can thrive the high humidity, however, cannot survive within the dry environment.
Having a soft and delicate nature, these plants do not like high pressure. Therefore, it is necessary to handle them with care and caution. Moreover, provide them with a comfortable place to grow and breathe easily.
Pest and disease resistant
These attractive plants having self-defensive characteristics are stable and secure. Since they are not susceptible to pests. However, a few mealybugs can affect the growth of these little plants.
To avoid these insects, mix neem oil with water and spray them on delicate fronds of plants. These ferns do not like soggy soils as extra water can either rot the roots or cause fungal disease. Therefore, a cautious attitude is required while watering the plant.
The growth rate of eyelash fern is quite slow. It takes many months to get mature. Nevertheless, the size of the plant is so small that you cannot easily notice its growth. The beautiful green leaves are 8 inches wide and the stems possess a height of 6 inches.
The eyelash ferns are very durable plants and possess a life span of many years. They stay green and fresh for a pretty long time.
Eyelash ferns have some filix elements that are venomous for cats and dogs. The fronds of the plant if ingested by any pet can cause diarrhea or vomiting. However, it is not poisonous for humans. Therefore, you should keep your pets away from this plant.
These plants go into dormancy with the decrease in temperature during winter for saving their energies and lives. They nearly stop their growth and no innovative outgrowth is noticed. The dormancy period ends at the start of the spring season.
Eyelash fern care
The eyelash fern care involves giving considerate importance to water, sunlight, soil, temperature, humidity, and fertilizer requirement. The steps to be considered for eyelash care includes the following:
The eyelash fern care does not require enough water for growing. The plant can still grow lavishly even if you water it once a week as it loves the arid climate.
However, while watering the plant, it is necessary to guarantee that 2-3 inches of upper soil are entirely dry. Always keep in mind that don’t overwater your eyelash fern as it does not like damp and soggy soils.
These plants are fond of filtered or partial light. Therefore, you need to place the pot of eyelash fern where the sunlight infilters for 2-4 hours a day. Always avoid keeping the pot in direct sunlight as it may scourge the brightness and green color of its leaves.
Eyelash fern likes warm tropical temperature. The optimum pH range for your little palm tree ranges from 18°C to 24°C. In case if the temperature increases this range, water your plant more than the usual routine.
However, extreme weather conditions specifically too hot days are injurious for the growth of this plant. Since heat can influence the delicacy of its fronds terribly.
On the other hand, the cooler temperature is tolerable to some extent. Nevertheless, always keep the temperature at more than 10°C. Therefore, it is recommended that in winters move your plant from home garden to indoor.
The humidity of a common house is around 10% that is quite less for ensuring the adequate growth of this lovely plant as they need a humidity level of 70%. Therefore, you should adopt an extra cautious attitude in monitoring the humidity levels.
To ensure the required level of humidity, either install a humidifier or place the pot of plant in between the other plants. The pebble trays and terrariums are also effective options in maintaining humidity levels.
Fertilizer Requirements for eyelash fern
These ferns are not food lovers and they feel fine if you feed them sporadically. You do not need to add fertilizers in the pot frequently rather diluted fertilizer once a month is enough for them.
The most suitable type of fertilizer for them is house plant fertilizer as it has less nitrogen which is the best for this little fern. Moreover, it is also necessary to remember that excessive fertilizer is harmful to it and it does not require any fertilizer in the winter season.
These ferns sprout happily in slightly acidic soils having a pH of 6.1-7.5. You can maintain the pH level of soil by adding two drops of vinegar in one water gallon, and then spray that water on the upper surface of the soil regularly.
The neutral soils having a pH of 6.6 or 7.3 are also fine for this little one. However, in any case, you have to make sure that soil possesses adequate aeration.
Pruning the mini palm tree also helps it grow adequately. It is suggested to cut the old fronds and give proper space to the new ones for sprouting.
The eyelash fern requires re-potting after 12 months. The re-potting time is evident from the height of the plant and when its roots initiate coming out of the drainage holes. This is the time when your plant needs a bigger pot for flourishing further.
Eyelash Fern Propagation
Increasing the collection of eyelash fern is also not a difficult task. Here are some simple tips through which anyone can enhance the number of eyelash ferns for adorning different corners of the house.
- First, take out the plant from the pot gently
- Cut a few clippings of the plant along with fronds and rhizomes
- Every clipping must possess upper leaves and lower rhizome
- Put the parent plant back within the pot
- Take another small pot and fill it with soil like ½ inches
- Then plant that clipping within the pot by placing its base 1 inch beneath the soil surface
- Ensure to place the pot in the area which receives sunlight for 2-4 hours daily
- Water the plant once a week
- Enjoy sprouting a new, fresh, and bright green eyelash fern
If anyone of you is searching for a plant that is compact, beautiful, durable, evergreen and requires minimal care and maintenance, then eyelash fern is the best choice.
These mini palm trees possess fan-like fronds that emerge from a central base and belongs to an evergreen community. The leaves are not prone to any pest except mealybugs and they are not toxic to humans. However, you have to take care of your pets as eyelash fern leaves are poisonous for them.
Moreover, the pretty ferns also possess the quality of purifying the surrounding environment. All of these attributes make it the best choice as an indoor ornamental plant for adorning any corner of the house and purifying the surrounding environment.