Nephrolepis exaltata is considered as being a serious invasive plant, forming dense monocultures. It has 50 to 250cm (20 to 98 inch) long and 6 to 15cm (2 to 6 inch) broad in tufted clusters arising from underground rhizomes.
The individual pinnae (leaflets) are as much as 2 to 8cm (1 to 3 inch) long and shallowly toothed, but not further divided. The pinnate vein pattern is also visible on these highly compound leaves.
The round sori (clusters of spore-bearing organs) are in two rows near the margins on the underside of the pinnae.
- Nephrolepis exaltata is one of the easiest of the ferns to grow indoors. These ferns need pliantly of space to develop their long fronds.
- Rotate the plant from time to time to ensure symmetrical growth, but as far as possible leave it undisturbed.
- In some of the extremely feathery forms of Nephrolepis exaltata Bostoniensis some of the fronds of the plant occasionally revers to the original species.
- Cut out any long, insufficiently segmented fronds as soon as they appear.
- If permitted to survive, they will take over the plant.
- They need a high level of humidity provided by regular misting and trays of moist pebbles placed under their pots. Use trepid soft water if possible.
- Once a week, apply a gentle shower with trepid soft water.