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Can someone tell me why this fern is dying?
It's been in my tank for about 4 months and is slowly dying.
Is it a lighting problem?
Is the substraight too wet?

What type of ferns are people keeping with good results?

Thanks,
Tim

 

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I couldn't really say why the fern is dying from the description. What type of substrate are you using? have you checked the roots? What type of fern is it? What type of lighting are you using, and how far from that lighting source is the fern?

Okay, enough of 20 questions.

As for ferns I am successfully keeping, I have the resurrection fern (Polyploides sp.), some type of Maidenhair fern (Adiantium sp.), a lemon button fern (Nephrolepis cordata 'duffi'), and some unidentified fern that has started growing spontaneously. All of these ferns grow in very moist parts of my terraria near the water feature, but my substrate is a rather course type of media--1/4 and 1/2" coco husk chips mixed with activated charcoal.

The lemon button fern has sent runners all over the tank and I've given away at least 10 plantlets. The resurrection fern has steadily grown to about 2x its original size in the course of the last year. The maidenhair fern has been in its 10 gallon terrarium for about 4 months and is about 2-3 x its original size. Most of these were bought at Lowes for less than $3 each (the Exotic Angel Brand).


This is my first attempt to post an image here, so I hope it worked! It works differently than the other forum I use with this same format. No image hosting, huh? I guess that keeps bandwidth down.
 

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The lemon button you sent me is doing well, and has new shoots coming up. The way I understand it is that most ferns do not do well in tanks, due to the roote rotting. I have not had any issues, but read that some place.

Homer said:
I couldn't really say why the fern is dying from the description. What type of substrate are you using? have you checked the roots? What type of fern is it? What type of lighting are you using, and how far from that lighting source is the fern?

Okay, enough of 20 questions.

As for ferns I am successfully keeping, I have the resurrection fern (Polyploides sp.), some type of Maidenhair fern (Adiantium sp.), a lemon button fern (Nephrolepis cordata 'duffi'), and some unidentified fern that has started growing spontaneously. All of these ferns grow in very moist parts of my terraria near the water feature, but my substrate is a rather course type of media--1/4 and 1/2" coco husk chips mixed with activated charcoal.

The lemon button fern has sent runners all over the tank and I've given away at least 10 plantlets. The resurrection fern has steadily grown to about 2x its original size in the course of the last year. The maidenhair fern has been in its 10 gallon terrarium for about 4 months and is about 2-3 x its original size. Most of these were bought at Lowes for less than $3 each (the Exotic Angel Brand).


This is my first attempt to post an image here, so I hope it worked! It works differently than the other forum I use with this same format. No image hosting, huh? I guess that keeps bandwidth down.
 
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Ferns

I don't know if it would be the same in tanks, but my ferns that I have outside in my flower gardens only do good if they are in complete shade. I just put a fern in my tank but I put it under a log that is elevated.
Is yours maybe getting too much light?
Rhonda
 

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Rhonda,

Even full shade outside is often brighter than most of the lighting we have in tanks . . . even with compact fluorescent lighting. I do believe that Kyle is right about root rot in many ferns, but I believe that is because an awful lot of people use a substrate that is not coarse enough or does not drain as well as it should. For example, ground peat moss and long fiber sphagnum hold a lot of water and do not allow oxygen exchange with the roots. This can cause methane buildup around the roots and death of the plant.

That is possibly what is happenning here.
 

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Hard to tell from the picture but I think it is from too little moisture. This is a Nephrolepis selection of some kind. They really do well in moderately brght light given enough humidity and root moisture. These ferns can also be somewhat epiphytic if given enough humidity.
 
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