Davallia or Umbrella plant, Squirrel's foot fern, Hare's foot fern is a fern in the Davalliaceae family found in Malaysia. In their native habitat, these plants are epiphytic in nature, which explains their creping rhizomes.
Davallia are easy to grow. They are best suited for hanging baskets especially with their rhizomes hanging out of the basket. They can be easily maintained as a houseplant and do not require frequent repotting.
The plant does not require a lot of sunlight. It does well in partial to full shade. Grow it in an area where it will receive filtered sunlight or you can provide it with artificial light. Direct sunlight can damage the foliage.
The plant has lush evergreen foliage with furry rhizomes that hang over the sides of the container. These fuzzy, hairy rhizomes are what give the name rabbit's foot fern to the plant. Do not bury these rhizomes.
The plant requires frequent watering. Ferns love moist conditions. Don't ever let the rhizomes dry out as that might weaken the plant or worse kill it. Frequently mist the plant too. If you notice the fronds turning yellow then that's a sign of overwatering. So don't over-water the plant.
A rich, loamy, well-drained soil with lots of peat; in a container with drainage holes will be good for the plant. The soil pH should be either neutral or slightly acidic. Soil should be moisture-retentive. You can add a layer of mulch on the soil so that moisture is maintained.
The fern can grow up to 2ft in height. The rhizomes should be allowed to grow uncontrolled. It's better to grow these plants in hanging baskets for the full visual effect.
Feed the fern with a weak liquid houseplant fertilizer once a month. They should not be fertilized heavily; that could be harmful for the fern.
Thrips, mites and fungal gnats might infest the plant. Check for these frequently and control measures should be taken immediately. Use organic insecticides.
It is a low-maintenance plant which can easily be grown indoors. It is great specimen plant. You can also use it as a hedge plant. Ferns are said to remove chemical pollutants from air.