Houseplants forum→๐Ÿ†˜Fern is developing browning spots and lines

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Rori
May 12, 2020 3:15 AM CST
Hello everyone!
So...I had this fern that used to be super healthy and putting out a lot of new growth and now it has these weird marks on it.It also has a very mild yellowing on some parts but it's on the older leaves so I think that's completely normal
Thumb of 2020-05-12/Rori/db488c
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Do you know what it could be?
Thanks ๐Ÿ˜Š
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
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WillC
May 12, 2020 10:21 AM CST
Ferns are fragile plants. The tiny leaflets will get discolored easily if light and water are less than perfect. Thus, there is always a limited amount of discoloration on the leaflets. Sometimes entire fronds will discolor and die back. It is only if many fronds start to discolor all at once or if newly emerging fronds are discolored that there may be a problem.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Rori
May 13, 2020 2:04 PM CST
WillC said:Ferns are fragile plants. The tiny leaflets will get discolored easily if light and water are less than perfect. Thus, there is always a limited amount of discoloration on the leaflets. Sometimes entire fronds will discolor and die back. It is only if many fronds start to discolor all at once or if newly emerging fronds are discolored that there may be a problem.


That's exactly why i'm a bit concerned... the new unfurling leaves have these spots and there is not one leaf that doesn't have them (even though for the previous 7 months it had been healthy)
Seattle, WA (Zone 8b)
NewbieGardner
May 13, 2020 10:31 PM CST
Your fern plant looks like nfected so first treat the plant with any fungicide.
Name: Sue Taylor
Northumberland, UK
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kniphofia
May 13, 2020 10:51 PM CST
Infected with what? As Will says they are fragile and will react to draughts, cold, watering, light intensity changes.
Seattle, WA (Zone 8b)
NewbieGardner
May 14, 2020 12:13 AM CST
I agree with Will but at the same time I would have checked if the plant is infected by pests or any diseases. Here is the link which helps to know the causes of brown fern leaves. Hope it helps!
https://gardening.yardener.com...
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
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WillC
May 14, 2020 8:25 AM CST
Can you post a photo that shows the entire plant, including its pot?

How do you decide when to water and how much do you then give it?
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Seattle, WA (Zone 8b)
NewbieGardner
May 14, 2020 10:35 AM CST
There are two methods.
1. Touch the soil by hand and see if its moist or dry. If its dry then its time to water the plants.

2. You get a meter that shows if water is excessive or not. You have to insert that meter into the potting soil.
Recently I bought one meter which shows readings for soil, water and acidic(PH). Its a great tool for gardening. You can buy it from Amazon online store.
[Last edited by NewbieGardner - May 14, 2020 10:37 AM (+)]
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Rori
May 15, 2020 2:37 AM CST
NewbieGardner said:There are two methods.
1. Touch the soil by hand and see if its moist or dry. If its dry then its time to water the plants.

2. You get a meter that shows if water is excessive or not. You have to insert that meter into the potting soil.
Recently I bought one meter which shows readings for soil, water and acidic(PH). Its a great tool for gardening. You can buy it from Amazon online store.


I have had a lot of houseplants and the first method is exactly what I do before watering anything. I don't really use meters because the cheap ones are not reliable and the expensive ones.... well they are expensive....
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Rori
May 15, 2020 2:39 AM CST
NewbieGardner said:I agree with Will but at the same time I would have checked if the plant is infected by pests or any diseases. Here is the link which helps to know the causes of brown fern leaves. Hope it helps!
https://gardening.yardener.com...


I have had a fern that turned crispy because I neglected it and that's not the same case here... also I can't see any rotten parts on the stem or any other signs of overwatering (yellowing leaves?)

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Rori
May 15, 2020 2:47 AM CST
WillC said:Can you post a photo that shows the entire plant, including its pot?

How do you decide when to water and how much do you then give it?



Thumb of 2020-05-15/Rori/cb93ac
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This is it, I have had it in this pot since last fall I think. It used to be a part of another bigger plant that I had just repotted so I got a few rhizomes out to make a new plant.. from afar it looks kind of healthy but the tips of the leaves have these small marks, that's why I sent the closeups.

Also, like I do with the rest of my houseplants, I stick my finger in the soil to check if the soil is dry and then I water it. I don't really know how much water I give it... but I empty out the water that has drained through after I finish watering and checking the rest of my plants... (maybe after 5-10 mins)

Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
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WillC
May 15, 2020 7:18 AM CST
Overall, your Fern looks fine. I see some healthy new fronds that don't show brown tips. Unless conditions are perfect, and they never are indoors, there will always be some leaflet browning. Even minor lapses in watering can cause that and I suspect that is all that yours has experienced. If anything, you may be letting the soil get a bit too dry before watering.

I agree that moisture meters are not reliable because they vary from one potting soil to another. Press your finger down on the surface of the soil. When it feels just barely damp, but not quite dry, then it should be watered. As long as the pot is not left sitting in water, overwatering is unlikely to be a problem.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Rori
May 15, 2020 11:05 AM CST
WillC said:Overall, your Fern looks fine. I see some healthy new fronds that don't show brown tips. Unless conditions are perfect, and they never are indoors, there will always be some leaflet browning. Even minor lapses in watering can cause that and I suspect that is all that yours has experienced. If anything, you may be letting the soil get a bit too dry before watering.

I agree that moisture meters are not reliable because they vary from one potting soil to another. Press your finger down on the surface of the soil. When it feels just barely damp, but not quite dry, then it should be watered. As long as the pot is not left sitting in water, overwatering is unlikely to be a problem.


Ok! Thank you very much! It's true that ferns are a bit different. I will keep in mind to keep it a little damp Grin

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Rori
May 15, 2020 2:05 PM CST
WillC said:Overall, your Fern looks fine. I see some healthy new fronds that don't show brown tips. Unless conditions are perfect, and they never are indoors, there will always be some leaflet browning. Even minor lapses in watering can cause that and I suspect that is all that yours has experienced. If anything, you may be letting the soil get a bit too dry before watering.

I agree that moisture meters are not reliable because they vary from one potting soil to another. Press your finger down on the surface of the soil. When it feels just barely damp, but not quite dry, then it should be watered. As long as the pot is not left sitting in water, overwatering is unlikely to be a problem.


Ok! Thank you very much! It's true that ferns are a bit different. I will keep in mind to keep it a little damp Grin

Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
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WillC
May 16, 2020 8:06 AM CST
Thumbs up
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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