Dicksonia Antarctica Care | Growing Soft Tree Fern

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Dicksonia Antarctica Care is easy. It is a tropical fern that take the form of a tree. It has a shaggy trunk and ornamental foliage. Dicksonia Antarctica grows in areas with mild winters and are resistant only till USDA Zones 9, with protection in winter.how to grow dicksonia antractica tree fern_mini

The Soft Tree Fern (Dicksonia antarctica) is a tough plant that grows in northern Queensland to Tasmania in the South. Also known as the Tasmanian tree fern, its natural habitat includes dense forests where it grows under the canopy of trees in filtered sunlight and lot of moisture.

Table of contents

USDA Zones: 9 – 11

Propagation Method: Spores, Cuttings

Difficulty: Easy

Soil pH: Neutral

Other names: Soft tree fern, man fern, Australian tree fern, Tasmanian tree fern, woolly tree fern

Growing habit

It is a slow growing tree and grows only 3 – 5 cm in a year and it can reach 12 m height in its natural habitat with a trunk like a palm tree. However, it does not reach that height far from its native region.


Dicksonia Antarctica can be reproduced from cuttings and spores, to learn how to grow it from spores read this.


Dig a planting hole twice the size of the root ball of your plant. Add five or ten gallon of compost to the soil and mix well reserved. Also mix perlite if your soil is not well draining.

Plant the fern at same depth in which it is grown. Firm the soil around the roots and water throughly.

Dicksonia Antarctica Care and Growing Requirements


Soil for growing soft tree fern should be loose and well-drained, rich in compost or manure and other organic matters.


It can grow in full shade or partial shade, avoid full sun.


Soft tree fern prefers moist soil, regular watering is required.


It is hardy to 23 °F (−5 °C) and its hardiness increases as tree grows old. It must be protracted from severe or prolonged cold.

Young or newly planted soft tree fern should be overwintered when temperature falls below 32 °F (0 °C).


The atmosphere should be moist but not cold. In summer, spray the trunk and fronds several times a day when the temperature exceeds 20 ° C.

Dicksonia Antarctica Care Tips

  • Apply a layer of organic mulch 4 to 6 inches thick. Mulch is important to preserve moisture.
  • Dicksonia Antartica requires care from dry winds, it doesn’t tolerate dry and windy places.
  • Do not remove the faded and died leaves. They provide extra protection from freezing in winter and protect the plant from drying winds.

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  1. It’s not a tropical fern. It grows from subtropical to temperate regions, and can cope with snow, as long as it is not a deep long freeze. What it really despises is hot dry winds/sun.

  2. Can the Dicksonia Antarctica be moved once planted. I think it may be too sunny where it is now
    Thank you


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