Sword Fern Overview
The sword fern is commonly found in humid forests and swamps, growing best in damp but not soggy soils. It has widely arching fronds with toothed pinnae. Most cultivars are derived from this species, making it very popular as an indoor plant or planted in hanging baskets. The sword fern is often confused with the tuberous sword fern (Nephrolepis cordifolia) – both are invasive in different parts of South Africa. Nephrolepis exaltata is a problem in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga.