The Sword Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata) which is commonly known as Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’) is a tropical fern. It is commonly found in swamps and humid forests regions of South America and Africa. Other names of this plant includes wild boston fern, tuber ladder fern and fishbone fern. This plant has gained popularity as an indoor plant often growing in hanging baskets.

boston fern plant

Knowing Boston Sword Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)


The sword fern grow 50 to 250 cm high and 6 to 15 cm wide.


It has erect fronds and the boston fern specialises in arching fronds.  It has a pinnate vein pattern and each pinna can be 2 to 8 cm long. They look like small leaflets.

Growing Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis’)


The boston fern is a very strong plant that can handle some of the toughest climates. For growing indoors this plant needs bright filtered lights for the best results.


It prefers a damp and wet soil which is rich in nutrients and thus you need to regularly water as well as feed your boston fern. It is often noted that this plant can survive through harsh weathers and even during droughts.


You can propagate the Boston Sword Fern through division.

boston sword fern

Another important thing to note is that the Nephrolepis exaltata is non toxic and therefore safe for cats.



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