genus  Huperzia

Tassel Ferns are epiphytes which grow on trees or rocks and are found mostly in rainforest or in moist situations in other forests. They make extremely decorative basket plants and ares ideal for greenhouses.  The hardier species can be grown in outdoor gardens under suitable conditions.  Tassel Ferns are easy to grow but have certain requirements.  They need air movement, humidity and light for growth but should be protected from scorching direct sunlight.

Growing Medium

Tassel Ferns will not survive in soil.  Use well-drained potting mixes which provide plenty of aeration around the roots and yet retain moisture for growth.  Spaghnum peat, various grades of pine bark and charcoal are suitable materials.  Growers have reported that the galvanizing of new wire baskets has damaged some Tassel Fern stems.


Tassel Ferns like to be kept moist but not wet and need more water in summer than in winter.  They prefer to be watered in the morning so the potting mix can dry out and this will help reduce the incidence of stem and leaf rot.


At regular intervals during summer, Tassel Ferns appreciate applications of liquid fertiliser such as fish emulsion and seaweed extract or soluble fertilizer such as Thrive or Aquasol.


Tassel Ferns are not often troubled with pests but fern scale can cause damage to the plant and will eventually kill it if not treated.  Slugs and snails can sometimes eat the tips of young shoots.  Occasional use of a systemic insecticide and fungicide will help to keep the plants healthy.

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