Japanese painted fern is an ornamental, deciduous, feathery fern. It has silvery-grey fronds that are dusty purple towards the center with purplish-red veins and stems. The fronds are variable in length, generally 30 to 75 cm long but occasionally over a meter in length. It is ideal for growing in a woodland border or beneath the shade of a tree.
Scientific Name: Athyrium niponicum var. pictum
Common Names: Japanese painted fern, Painted lady fern.
Synonyms:Anthurium nipponicum ‘Metallicum’, Athyrium goeringianum ‘Pictum’
How to grow and maintain Japanese painted fern:
It thrives best in partial to full shade or an area that gets dappled sunlight year-round.
It grows in well-drained, moist soil, and require organic matter to grow. The soil pH should be neutral or very slightly acidic for the ferns to grow properly.
Water your plant regularly and always keep the soil evenly moist but never allow your plant to sit in water.
It thrives well in room temperatures between 65 degrees Fahrenheit – 75 degrees Fahrenheit / 18 degrees Celsius – 24 degrees Celsius are ideal, and no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius).
During spring and summer, fertilize weekly or biweekly with a balanced liquid fertilizer diluted by half. Deformed leaves with brown or yellow spots or edges are a sign of too much fertilizer.
Re-pot your ferns once every 2 years in the spring, moving the plant into a pot only one size larger.
Remove yellowed leaves and older fronds to protect the crowns and tender shoots. Keep to the desired height and shape with light pruning or clipping at any time.
Japanese painted fern can be propagated by sowing spores in mid to late summer or by division in spring. To divide the plant first slowly remove the plant from its container and separate the plant into 2-3 clumps ensuring each clump has at least 1 growing tip. Then replant these clumps in nutrient-rich, well-drained soil and ensure the clumps remain moist, at least until the new fronds start to appear.
Pests and Diseases:
It has no serious pest or disease problems. They are susceptible to attacks by scales, spider mites, and mealybugs.