Propagating Rabbit's Foot Fern - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Garden Friend
Fayetteville, TN
Question by rjohnst
August 14, 1998
I have a small Rabbit's Foot Fern . I would like to start a new one for my sister. How can I do this without dividing the fern?

Answer from NGA
August 14, 1998


The easiest way to propagate a fern is through division. It's possible, but not always easy, to raise plants from spores obtained from the underside of mature fronds. If you're ready for a challenge, try spore sowing: Ferns produce dust-like spores. Collect them in a paper bag from ripe spore-cases found on the underside of the fronds. Leave them to dry for a couple of weeks and then spread them very thinly on the surface of moist seed starting mix. Both the mix and the pot should be sterilized prior to using. (Boiling water works well.) After sowing the spores on the soil surface, cover the pot with a sheet of glass or plexiglass and place it in a shady spot. When the plants are large enough to handle transplant them into small pots. The spores will take from 30-180 days to germinate. Good luck!

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