How to grow and care for Lemon Button Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii') Indoors

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Lemon Button Fern, Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii'

Botanical name: Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii'
Family: Nephrolepidaceae
Common names: Lemon Button Fern, Button Sword Fern, Fishbone Fern, Little-leaved Sword Fern

Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' Description

Lemon Button Fern also called Button Sword Fern, Fishbone Fern or Little-leaved Sword Fern is a compact, small-sized, hardy fern which bears gracefully drooping stems about 1 ft long.

The Lemon Button Fern leaves are small, round, button-like and they release a lemony aroma when crushed, hence the common name "Lemon Button Fern".

Lemon Button Fern spreads by means of underground rhizomes; clumps of wiry stems that grow beneath the soil surface.

Due to its compact growth, Lemon Button Fern is ideal for a terrarium or for the small spaces.

Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' Size

Lemon Button Fern is a compact fern which grows to a height of about 1 ft and 1ft wide.

Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' Origin

The Lemon Button Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii') is native to the Pantropical regions of the world where it grows in swampy, damp, forest-like conditions.

Buy beautiful and healthy Lemon Button Ferns from Etsy.

Lemon Button Fern, Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii'

Photo Credit: Breck's

Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' (Lemon Button Fern) Indoor Care

Lemon Button Fern Light Requirements

Lemon Button Fern 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 Lemon BUtton Fern. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

How to Water Lemon Button Fern

Water Lemon Button Fern thoroughly for optimum growth and keep the soil evenly moist at all times and never allow it to dry out.

Reduce watering for your Lemon Button Fern during cold season as growth is minimal at this time. Read more on how to water houseplants.

Ensure the pot for your Lemon Button Fern has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to rotting.


Temperature for Lemon Button Fern

Average warmth between 12-250C is ideal for your Lemon Button Fern. Read more on understanding temperature for houseplants.

Humidity for Lemon Button Fern

Lemon Button Fern thrives under high humidity. The fern is ideal for humid areas like the bathroom and the kitchen.

To raise humidity for your Lemon Button Fern, set the pot on a wet pebble tray. Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

Lemon Button Fern can also be grown in a terrarium as the high humidity it requires can be maintained in a terrarium. Read on how to make a closed terrarium for plants.

Fertilizer (Feeding) for Lemon Button Fern

Feed Lemon Button Fern with a balanced water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing period.

Withhold feeding for your Lemon Button Fern during the cold season as growth is reduced at this time. Read more on how to feed houseplants.

Lemon Button Fern Pruning

Lemon Button Fern pruning is easy. Remove dead and damaged fronds from your Lemon Button Fern.

As the fern ages, the older fronds turn brown. Cut them off at the base to maintain your fern looking neat and tidy.

Lemon Button Fern Repotting

Repot Lemon Button Fern every 2-3 years at the beginning of the growing season to provide adequate room for the growth of the rhizome.

One sign of an overcrowded Lemon Button Fern is wilting leaves. Failure to repot an overcrowded Lemon Button Fern can result in death of the plant.

Repot your Lemon Button Fern into a pot that is 1 size larger and one that has drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to rotting.

You can also be divide your Lemon Button Fern into several sections during repotting and pot the sections individually to propagate new ferns.

Soil for Lemon Button Fern

The best soil for Lemon Button 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 Lemon Button Fern.

Buy quality Potting Mix for your Lemon Button Fern from Etsy.

Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' (Lemon Button Fern) Propagation

Lemon Button Fern propagation can be done by division at the beginning of the growing season. Lemon Button Fern can also be propagated from spores but they are difficult to grow.

How to propagate Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii' by plant division

Carefully take out the Lemon Button Fern from its pot and divide the rhizome into several sections. Ensure each section has adequate roots.

Pot these sections of your Lemon Button Fern into individual pots while ensuring that you do not bury the rhizomes too deep but maintain the soil level that they were in the previous pot.

Place the pots in a warm, shaded place and maintain the soil moist through out until the new Lemon Button Fern are well established after which routine care can begin.

Lemon Button Fern, Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii'

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Lemon Button Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii') Problems Indoors

Lemon Button Fern brown dots or lines on the underside of fronds

Brown dots or lines on the underside of the fronds of Lemon Button fronds are spores which can be used for propagation of new Lemon Button Ferns. They indicate that the frond is mature and healthy.

In their natural environment, these spores drop to the soil and grow into new Lemon Button Ferns.

Lemon Button Fern brown leaf tips and no growth

Lemon Button Fern brown leaf tips and no growth is die to dry air (low humidity).

To raise humidity for your Lemon Button Fern, set the pot on a wet pebble tray. Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

Lemon Button Fern can also be grown in a terrarium as the high humidity it requires can be maintained in a terrarium. Read on how to make a closed terrarium for plants.

Lemon Button Fern brown shells scattered on fronds

Lemon Button Fern brown shells scattered on fronds is an indication of a infestation by scales. Isolate the affected fern to avoid spread to other houseplants and treat appropriately for the pests.

Lemon Button Fern excessive leaf drop

Lemon Button Fern excessive leaf drop is indicative of too dry soil due to underwatering.

Water your Lemon Button Fern thoroughly and maintain the soil slightly moist but do not allow it to dry out completely for an extended period of time.

Lemon Button Fern isolated brown and yellow leaves

Lemon Button Fern isolated brown and yellow leaves are a result of excessive (accumulated) salts in the soil either from watering or fertilizers.

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

Lemon Button Fern yellowing leaves

Lemon Button Fern yellowing leaves is due to soggy soil. Ensure that the pot has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to prevent the soil from getting soggy.

Lemon Button Fern wilting leaves

Lemon Button Fern wilting leaves is an indication of overcrowding in the current pot. Repot your Lemon Button Fern into a larger pot or divide it up for more ferns.

Lemon Button Fern pests

Lemon Button Fern pests; scales and mealy bugs. Isolate the affected fern to avoid spread to other houseplants and treat appropriately.

Is Lemon Button Fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii') toxic?

Lemon Button Ferns (Nephrolepis cordifolia 'Duffii') are non-toxic to humans and pets. The plants are safe to grow indoors.

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