Published on February 20, 2020

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Courtesy of The Sill

Winter is officially getting old; new collections and promises of summer travel have us pining for warmer weather. The reality is, that’s months away, but thankfully there’s something that instantly transforms a home into a miniature tropical paradise: greenery. If you’re tired of the usual suspects, we’ve got a new recommendation for you, courtesy of The Sill. One of the shop’s most popular plants so far this year is the bird’s-nest fern

“It was a surprise!” says The Sill’s Erin Marino. “I’m hypothesizing it’s regaining popularity for a couple of reasons: It’s pet-friendly and arguably the easiest fern to care for indoors.” 

Along with the squiggly plant, the heart-shaped hoya and the monstera deliciosa are also best-sellers at the store. But given that one of those is seasonal (chalk it up to Valentine’s Day) and the other is already everywhere, we’re most excited about the unassuming fern. How do we ensure this new standout lasts well beyond springtime? We chatted with Marino to find out. 

Don’t Stick to a Schedule

It might seem counterintuitive, but you shouldn’t subject your fern to a set routine. According to Marino, the amount of hydration it needs varies by the time of year and the amount of light it has soaked up lately: “Water it about every week, allowing the soil to dry out at least halfway down between waterings,” she explains. “This is the max, though. If it’s had less light or it’s winter, you’ll want to water it less frequently, say every two weeks or so.” 

Consider Putting It in Your Bathroom

Most ferns are finicky about humidity, so try keeping yours in an area that naturally gets a lot of moisture—like on the ledge of your bathtub. No room? Marino recommends picking up a humidifier instead, “or just make sure to keep it far from anything that’s drying out the air further, like a heater.”

Keep It Away From Windows

It might look vaguely jungly, but the bird’s-nest does best in medium-to-bright indirect sun. “Definitely keep it out of harsh direct light, which will completely dry it out,” cautions Marino. Carve out a spot on a bookcase and save the windowsill for your succulents. 

See more plant stories:
There’s a New Way to Save Your Dying Plant
The One Mistake You’re Probably Making With Your Plants
5 Key Things I Learned From a Session With a Plant Doctor

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