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How to Transplant Rabbit Fern

Rabbit's foot fern (Davallia fejeensis) takes its nickname from the long, fuzzy growths that trail over the sides of the pot, resembling paws. These are the plant's rhizomes and should remain above the soil’s surface at all times. Although they do well growing outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 and up, they are generally sold as houseplants. Transplant the rabbit's foot fern only when the pot is full of roots and the plant seems declining.

Things You'll Need

  • Planting pot
  • Newspapers
  • Potting soil
  • Peat moss
  • Bark
  • Compost
  • Sharp knife
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    • 1

      Choose a pot that is one size wider than the current pot. Rabbit's foot fern's roots grow wide, not deep, so a deeper pot is not needed.

    • 2

      Spread newspapers on the work surface, making cleanup easy.

    • 3

      Use a potting soil with a high concentration of peat moss or make your own. Combine 50 percent peat moss, 30 percent shredded bark or small bark chunks, and 20 percent compost or high-quality potting soil. Thoroughly mix the ingredients and fill the pot half full with the mixture.

    • 4

      Remove all the lower fronds if you are dividing the rabbit fern before placing it in its new pot. Cut the remaining fronds in half.

    • 5

      Slide a knife around the inside rim of the rabbit fern's pot loosening roots that may be attached to the sides. Hold your hand over the top of the fern and turn the pot upside down. It should fall from the pot and land in your hand.

    • 6

      Divide the rabbit's foot fern by slicing it with a sharp knife. Immediately pot both portions so that the roots don't dry out.

    • 7

      Place the roots in the new pot at a depth that allows the rhizomes to remain on the soil’s surface. Add or remove potting mix if needed. Fill the pot with soil, stopping periodically to pat it down to remove air pockets.

    • 8

      Water the rabbit foot's fern slowly, until water seeps out of the bottom of the pot.