How to Make Homemade Fern Food
If you have fern plants and other plants in your home and want to save a little money, you can make your own fern/plant food. You only need a few minutes and a couple of household items.
Pour one gallon of rainwater or distilled water into a bucket. Do not use tap water; it may contain harmful minerals and chlorine. The water should be room temperature.
Place 1 teaspoon of potassium nitrate, 1/3 teaspoon of ammonia, 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt and 1 teaspoon of baking powder into the gallon of water. Mix well. You now have homemade fern food that also works with other houseplants.
Pour the fern food into a watering can and sprinkle on your fern's soil until it is damp but not soaked. Feed your fern the mixture about every four to six weeks.
Fern Plant Food
As a plant meal, compost serves up a full course of benefits. First, it provides important nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorous, to your fern's roots. For the best results, mix a couple of inches of compost or similar well-rotted organic matter into the top 10 inches of soil before you plant your ferns. Ferns have delicate roots and don't respond well to high dosages of nutrients all at once. Ferns grown as indoor houseplants require a different feeding schedule compared with their outdoor counterparts. Once you see new growth appear on your potted fern, begin fertilizing it once a month until new growth stops, typically in the late fall. Use any liquid houseplant fertilizer. Think of mulch as the dessert in your fern plant's multi-course meal. Mulch conserves soil moisture and regulates soil temperature, helping to create the moist, cool environment that many ferns enjoy.
- Distilled water or rainwater
- Potassium nitrate
- Epsom salt
- Baking powder
- Stirrer or spatula
- Watering can
- "Homemade Contrivances and How to Make Them"; Skyhorse Publishing; 2007
- "Home Made Best Made: Hundreds of Ways to Make All Kinds of Useful Things"; Reader's Digest; 1998
- Clemson Cooperative Extension: Hardy Ferns
- University of Vermont Extension: Growing Ferns Successfully Indoors