How to grow and care for Hare's Foot Fern (Davallia canariensis) Indoors

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Hare's Foot Fern, Davallia canariensis

Botanical name: Davallia canariensis
Family: Davalliaceae
Common name: Hare's Foot Fern

Davallia canariensis Description

Hare's Foot Fern is grown for its thick, scaly rhizomes which grow over the edge of the pot and resemble a hare's foot hence giving the fern its common name.

The Hare's Foot Fern rhizomes absorb moisture and nutients as they crawl. The fronds are broad, finely divided and look like carrot tops.

Hare's Foot Fern is ideal for a hanging basket where the rhizomes can hang freely for maximum display. The rhizomes should not be buried under the soil as it can lead to rotting.

Davallia canariensis Size

Hare's Foot Fern grows to a height of about 1.5 ft and about 2 ft wide.

Davallia canariensis Origin

Hare's Foot Fern (Davallia canariensis) is found from west Mediterranean to the Atlantic Islands where it grows in a sunny atmosphere and amongst the rocks.

The species name canariensis suggests that this fern has its origins in the Canary Islands.

Davallia canariensis Related Species

Hare's Foot Fern is related to the larger but less hardy Davallia fejeensis (Rabbit's Foot Fern), Davallia bullata (Squirrel's Foot Fern) and Davallia trichomanoides (Black Rabbit's Foot Fern).

Buy beautiful and healthy Davallia Ferns from Etsy.

Hare's Foot Fern, Davallia canariensis

Photo Credit: White Flower Farm

Davallia canariensis (Hare's Foot Fern) Indoor Care

Davallia canariensis Light Requirements

Davallia canariensis grows best in bright, indirect light. Keep it away from direct sunlight as it may scorch the fronds.

Turn the pot regularly to ensure even growth for your Hare's Foot Fern. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

How to water Davallia canariensis

For optimum growth of your Hare's Foot Fern, keep the soil slightly moist at all times.

Reduce watering for your Hare's Foot Fern during cold season as growth is minimal at this time. Maintain the rhizomes moist by daily misting.


Temperature for Davallia canariensis

Average warmth between 21-250C is ideal for Hare's Foot Fern. Check out this guide on understanding temperature for houseplants.

Humidity for Davallia canariensis

Hare's Foot Fern thrives under high humidity. The fern is ideal for humid areas like the bathroom and other moist areas.

Raise humidity for your Hare's Foot Fern by more frequent misting of the rhizomes to keep them moist or set the pot on a wet pebble tray. Check out these techniques on how raise humidity for houseplants.

Fertilizer (Feeding) for Davallia canariensis

Feed Hare's Foot Fern with a balanced water-soluble fertilizer every 2-3 weeks during the growing period.

Withhold feeding during the cold season as growth is minimal at this time. Read more on how to feed houseplants.

How to prune Davallia canariensis

Pruning Hare's Foot Fern is easy. Remove dead and damaged fronds from Hare's Foot Fern. As the fern ages, the older fronds turn brown. Cut them off at the base to maintain your fern looking neat and tidy.

Davallia canariensis Repotting

Repot Hare's Foot Fern every 2-3 years at the beginning of the growing season.

Use a pot that is 1 size larger and ensure the pot has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to rotting.

The Hare's Foot Fern can also be divided into several sections and potted individually to propagate new ferns.

Soil for Davallia canariensis

The best soil for Hare's Foot Fern should be rich in organic matter and free-draining to prevent it from getting soggy while providing the required nutrients. Most multi-purpose potting mixes are ideal for Hare's Foot Fern.

Buy quality Potting Mix for your Hare's Foot Fern from Etsy.

Davallia canariensis (Hare's Foot Fern) Propagation

Hare's Foot Fern propagation can be done by division of the rhizomes at the beginning of the growing season.

How to propagate Davallia canariensis by plant division

Carefully take out the fern from its pot and divide it into several sections. Ensure each section has adequate roots.

Pot these sections of your Hare's Foot Fern into individual pots while ensuring that you do not bury the rhizomes under the soil to avoid rotting.

Place the pots in a warm, shaded place and maintain the soil moist through out until the new Hare's Foot Ferns are well established.

Hare's Foot Fern, Davallia canariensis

Photo Credit: Garden Express

Davallia canariensis (Hare's Foot Fern) Problems Indoors

Why are the fronds of my Hare's Foot Fern yellowing, have brown leaf tips and there is no growth?

The cause of yellowing fronds, brown tips and no new growth in your Hare's Foot Fern is dry air.

Raise humidity for Hare's Foot Fern by more frequent misting of the rhizomes to keep them moist or set the pot on a wet pebble tray. Check out these techniques on how raise humidity for houseplants.

Why are the leaves of my Hare's Foot Fern yellowing?

Soggy soil is the reason for yellowing leaves in your Hare's Foot Fern. Ensure the pot has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining.

Why are the leaves of my Hare's Foot Fern wilting?

Wilting leaves in Hare's Foot Fern is an indication of overcrowding in the current pot.

Repot your Hare's Foot Fern into a larger pot or divide it up for more ferns.

Why is there excessive leaf drop in my Hare's Foot Fern?

Leaflets drop in Hare's Foot Fern is indicative of too dry soil.

Maintain the soil slightly moist and do not allow it to dry out completely for an extended period of time.

Why does my Hare's Foot Fern have some brown and yellow leaves?

Browning and yellowing in isolated areas of Hare's Foot Fern are as a result of excessive salts in the soil either from watering or fertilizers.

Flush out the salts by repeatedly running a steady stream of water thorough the soil and avoid overfertilizing in the future.

Why are there brown shells scattered on fronds of my Hare's Foot Fern?

Brown shells scattered on fronds of your Hare's Foot Fern is an indication of a infestation by Scales. Isolate the affected plant to avoid spread to other houseplants and treat appropriately.

Hare's Foot Fern pests

Hare's Foot Fern pests; Scales and Mealy Bugs. Isolate the affected plant to avoid spread to other houseplants and treat appropriately.

Is Davallia canariensis (Hare's Foot Fern) toxic?

Hare's Foot Ferns (Davallia canariensis) are non-toxic to humans and pets. The plants are safe to grow indoors.

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