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stag horn fernThis is my “MOTHER” superbum ( Platycerium superbum ). She arrived in my family of plants in 1988, which makes her the ripe old age of  25. Obviously then she was only a pup, looking like the pup pictured below.stag babyAs she is an epiphyte, a container like the one above was created for her years ago. It was filled with a mixture of potting soil and worm castings. She was then attached using soft string and hung underneath a tree. The leaf drop replenishes the container with humus. She loves a twice weekly spray of water. Chopped Banana  peels and mashed banana are added twice a year.

stag full

These ferns develop a humus collecting “nest” of non-fertile fronds and in doing so can grown up to 1 metre wide. The ferns also develop hanging fertile fronds that can reach up to 2 metres long.]

Both fertile and non-fertile fronds are broad and branching and grown to resemble the horns of a stag or elk, thus the common names stag horn or elk horn.