Why Are My Ferns Turning Light Green?

Nov - 13

Why Are My Ferns Turning Light Green?

Few plants can match ferns for graceful green leaves, called fronds, that comprise of small leaflets in different shapes and sizes. Mostly tropical or subtropical plants, ferns thrive in lower temperatures and higher humidity, growing as houseplants in all regions and outside in warmer regions of the U.S.. If your fern’s fronds turn light green, then this could be ordinary, but could also indicate a problem.

A Normal Occurrence

Seeing a couple of light green fronds in an otherwise healthy, glowing green fern might not signal a issue, particularly if those fronds are young and newly formed. Since the new fronds mature, their color will probably darken. For an older plant, you might see some lightening of color in the old fronds near the bottom of the plant as they impede their action. Eventually, these old fronds can turn brown, dry up and fall from the plant. This is normal and not a issue, provided the plant continues to create new fronds near its middle.

Watering Problems

Most ferns need consistent watering to keep their soil evenly moist — not too moist or too deep. Too much or too little water may cause fronds to lose color, turning light green, then yellowing and ultimately wilting. Eventually, even if the problem’s not corrected, the fronds might fall from the plant. The watering program for a fern may vary, depending on whether it’s grown in dry, indoor air or outside where humidity tends to be higher and dirt tends to dry slowly. To get a houseplant, such as a Boston fern (Nephrolepis exaltata), the type of container may also have an effect on water requirements, because clay or unglazed ceramic dries out more quickly than a plastic grass. For best results, analyze the fern’s dirt often, watering whenever the soil surface feels dry to your fingertip, but never let the pot sit in water or in a water-filled saucer, and let it drain thoroughly after watering. Consistently use a container with drainage holes so that the fern’s origins don’t sit in water. Boston fern may also develop outside in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 through 12.

Too much Light

Most ferns grow best in colour. They do well under large, shade-producing trees or beneath a shady eave of a building, while they also grow well indoors in indirect lighting. If a fern unexpectedly gets much more lighting — for example, if you re remove branches over it or move the fern to a sunny spot indoors — its green fronds might take to a slightly bleached, light green or yellow green color. If the fern stays in strong light, the fronds could become scorched, turning brown and drying up. If you’ve purchased a new, greenhouse-grown fern, then even a shady spot outside might shock the plant and cause fronds to soften. To get a new fern that you plan to develop outdoors, such as the western sword fern (Polystichum munitum), move it outside gradually, increasing its exposure to outdoor conditions by an hour or 2 daily. Western sword fern grows in USDA zones 5 through 9.

Pest Infestations

Ferns can be prone to several pests, including scale insects, mealybugs and mites. Scale insects resemble hard, brown raised spots on fronds and stems, while mealybugs are white and cottony in appearance. Mites are microscopic but also you may see their weblike coverings on young fronds and also the tips of old fronds. These pests suck plant juices, potentially interfering with photosynthesis and causing fronds to lose colour and turn light green. Ferns are easily damaged from pesticides, so avoid using them. Control scales by cutting influenced fronds, disinfecting your shears in rubbing alcohol to prevent spread of plant disease, and ruin mealybugs by touching each person using a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. For dander, spray the fern with a powerful burst of water, aiming it at the visible webs.

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