Platycerium bifurcatum

Common Staghorn Fern, Elkhorn Fern

(1 customer review)


Platycerium bifurcatum, commonly known as Staghorn Fern, is an unusual and impressive evergreen fern with deep green forked fronds.

Although in its native rainforest environment it grows as an epiphytic fern, rooting itself to the crevices of trees, it nonetheless thrives planted terrestrially – making for an ideal indoor architectural fern for humid environments.


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Origin: Asia, Polynesia, East Australia
Genus: Platycerium
Species / Cultivar: bifurcatum
Common Name: Common Staghorn Fern, Elkhorn Fern

Plant Biography

Native to Polynesia, Platycerium bifurcatum roots itself into tree crevices where it develops a pleasing combination of flattened sterile fronds and dramatic, arching fertile fronds which grow up to a metre long.

The fertile fronds form a distinct shape, similar to the horns of a stag or elk, hence the common names Staghorn Fern and Elkhorn fern.

Being slow growing it can live for 20 years or so. The forked shape of the fronds enables gives it the greatest opportunity for each frond to find light in the highly competitive rainforest canopy.

Platycerium bifurcatum
Light: Bright Indirect
This plant likes sun, but keep out of direct sunlight. Best placed in an area near a window.
Soil: Indoor Potting Mix
Enjoys moist well drained soil with composted organics and some drainage material.
Growth Rate: Slow
Expect to see quite small amounts of growth over the years.
Water Requirement: Regular Watering
Water when soil surface is dry to the touch. Water must draining easily away.
Humidity: High
Provide moist air via daily misting or trays of wet grit. Keep away from drafts and heaters.
Maintenance: Low
Requires no attention beyond correct position and watering. An ideal starter plant!

Expert Tip

The lower heart shaped sterile fronds become hard when mature making watering from above tricky. For best results submerge the lower portion of the pot in water for 10 minutes and allow it to drain freely.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Platycerium bifurcatum needs a humid environment to thrive. Place in bright, indirect light in the kitchen or bathroom. Alternatively, with regular misting during the growing season, it will be happy anywhere away from central heating.

With an ultimate height and spread of 1 metre, and being slow growing, Platycerium bifurcatum is a relatively low maintenance indoor fern.

Our Platycerium bifurcatum are planted in pots with potting mix and can thrive permanently in these conditions.

1 customer review for Platycerium bifurcatum

I ordered 2 of the stag horn ferns and they arrived within 3 days and in great shape. They were decent size and cheaper than what I had seen elsewhere. There were even multiple plants in each pot.

Mona Steininger (verified owner)