Photos of Staghorn Ferns have been popping up over Pinterest and in magazines lately. I have loved Staghorns since visiting my grandparents in Florida and seeing them growing in their trees and attempting to bring home samples. Here are some amazing photos of the ferns and a little background in case you wish to grow your own.
BACKGROUND: Staghorns (also called Elk’s Horn and Antelope ear) get their name from their antler resembling leaf shape. Native in tropical regions of the world, the plants are epiphytes (air plants) make their homes often on the bark and crevasses of trees. Since the plant lives high in trees it lives off of humus (decaying leaves/organic matter) and rain water, and likes bright indirect light. Because of these living conditions, staghorns make great house plants.
PLANTING/CARE: If looking for a species to plant here in North East, try Platycerium bifurcatum which is tolerant up to -15 F. When planting Staghorns you can use wooly pockets, boards or baskets with good drainage. Water once a week and allow to dry out between waters. Most nurseries and garden centers will sell Staghorns, moss (sphagnum moss) and boards for growing at home, but I have never seen at Home Depot/Lowes. Or I have found a few vendors on etsy sell mounted ferns.