Platycerium bifurcatum

Platycerium bifurcatum

Posted by Hannah Brand on Feb 6th 2024

Staghorn Fern

Hey Plant Friends!

This week we are talking about Platycerium bifurcatum, more commonly known as Staghorn Fern. Staghorn Ferns are native to Java, New Guinea, Eastern Australia, New South Wales, Queensland, and Lord Howe Island.  This species of fern belongs to the Polypodiaceae plant family which is a family of ferns found in wet climates and rainforests, generally have a creeping habit, and are epiphytic. Epiphytic plants grow on other plants or surfaces and derive their moisture and nutrients from the air and rainwater. Staghorn ferns are often mounted on wood slats or planted in kokedama (moss balls). What makes this plant so unique are its large fronds that protect the root ball plant like a sheild. When grown to maturity, fronds resemble stag or elk horns and can reach lengths larger than 3 feet long!

Let’s talk about care. Staghorn Ferns love moderately bright, but indirect light in the home. You may notice a white, fuzzy “dust-like” material on the fronds. Don’t be alarmed, this layer protects the fern from harsh sunlight. When it’s time to repot, we recommend using soil rich in organic matter that is also light and airy. Fox Farm Coco Loco Potting Mix is a great choice. Staghorn Ferns need frequent watering. Keep the soil evenly moist but not soggy. You may water weekly during the summer months but cut back in the winter due to lower light conditions and cooler temperatures. Increase the humidity around your plant with a Continuous Spray Bottle. Check for pests weekly while watering for early treatment. Keep a close eye out for mealybugs and spider mites. Use Bonide’s Insecticidal Soap for easy treatment.

We currently carry Staghorn Ferns in the greenhouse in 4” pots. If you have any further questions feel free to reach out to us by phone, Instagram, or email us at

Happy planting!