Mahogany Fern Care Guide
mahogany fern care guide

Mahogany Fern Care Guide

So you want to grow a mahogany fern…

Known for its curled leaves and fanned spread of scalloping segments, the Mahogany Fern always makes your space richer. Its lush appearance and densely populated stems give it an enchanting look that welcomes all guests with an amazing sight. Little care goes into getting the best out of your Mahogany Fern, making it perfect for new plant parents.


Mahogany Ferns like to be moist, but not saturated or dry. It does not do well with drought! Water when the top inch is dry, which you can figure out by using a moisture meter like this one, or simply poking your finger into the dirt up to your first knuckle. This means you will end up watering at least weekly during the spring and summer, but cut back slightly during the fall/winter.

Light and humidity

Ferns looooooove high humidity and to be kept in moist – not soggy – soil. Don’t let it dry out between waterings or it will start crisping at the edges! They also like bright, indirect light, though they are able to adapt to lower light. Too much light will burn their delicate fronds.

Soil and fertilizer

Keep the Mahogany Fern in clean, well-draining soil. Since they prefer to be slightly moist, it is imperative that the soil drains well, otherwise it can lead to root rot. Make sure to empty the drainage tray of the pot, too, so it is not left standing in water. Fertilize monthly with a regular houseplant fertilizer diluted with water – they do not like too much power!

The Tres 20 Sauce Fertilizer (Plant Food) is an organic fertilizer created specifically for houseplants. It’s fortified with the ideal blend of minerals for steady healthy growth in your houseplants. The 20-20-20 blend consists of the Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorus.

Dilute one teaspoon of plant food in one liter of water and use in your normal watering routine every two weeks. The benefits of using the Tres 20 formula include healthy roots, strong growth, no risk of burning your plant, and optimal nutrition to avoid brown spots or yellowing.

Cleaning and pruning

Clean the leaves of your Mahogany Fern by gently misting it with water. Pruning encourages new growth, and is something you should be doing regularly anyway for maintenance. Simply use clean, sharp scissors to cut the stems at the soil line. You can then add the chopped fronds to your outdoor – or indoor! – compost bin. It’s a win-win!


Ferns can be propagated from cuttings placed directly into soil, making them simple to grow. For an added boost, you can dip the edge of the stems into a growth hormone before potting. It is best to do this in spring for healthy growth.


Mahogany Ferns don’t need to be repotted frequently, so look to increase their space only every 18-24 months. Try to repot during the spring or summer, during the growing season. You can tell it needs to be repotted when water start running straight through it when you water – this means that it is rootbound and there is very little dirt left!

Gently extract the plant from its current container and then put it in one 1-3” larger in diameter. Add more dirt, and you are set!


Remember: Mahogany Ferns need additional humidity, so you may even wish to add a tray with pebbles and water underneath it to keep it happy. The best part? These gorgeous plants are non-toxic AND pet-friendly!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram at @cellardplants for more plant care tips & tricks! And don’t forget to post pics of your new plant babes with #CellarDoorPlants so we can share them.

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