How to Prune a Boston Fern – Top Tips


A Caveat and Affiliates

First off, a little caveat: within my articles you will find affiliate links, meaning if you buy them, I get a small commission. Your cost is not affected. In addition, I am an Amazon Associate and I earn from qualifying purchases on Amazon.

And yes, if I say that I recommend a product here, it means I truly believe it is a good product. I refuse to recommend any product that I have not researched and believe to be a good value.

Even better, I provide you with a very clear picture of the product, it’s use, and the probable value.

Earning your trust is important to me. I run this website myself and the commissions and donations help support the site.

Sound reasonable and fair enough? Let’s continue to the article.


How to Prune a Boston Fern – Keep It Healthy!

 Use our tips of how to prune a Boston Fern plant to keep your houseplant in top health. These beautiful plants need basic pruning and upkeep to ensure they stay growing healthy and beautiful. However, even beginners find this an easy task.


Ferns are comparatively simple to prune. You can prune them in the new spring before the new growth begins or when the new development comes in. If you desire to create a shape, you can trim around the edges of the plant. When growing ferns indoors, we make sure to cut off dead or dried fronds when they appear.


Method of pruning Ferns:

Let’s look at the basic method of how to prune a Boston fern.

First, gather your plant and the necessary equipment.

Whenever you are pruning Boston fern, you always use clean, sharp pruning shears or scissors. Since pruning can be messy, you probably want to transport the plants outside or place an old sheet in the territory to get the cuttings. You don’t need to crop the top of the plant when pruning a Boston fern. Instead, trim off the side fronds at the base.

Examine the Pruning Information for Your Specific Plant:

Some of the ferns, such as the Giant Chain Fern, do not do well with spring pruning. It is best to let the old greenery die out by itself in mid of summer. If you do not and, you can cause damage to the plant.


  • Once the fronds die, just remove them. Leaving dead fronds offers a place for fungus and pests to grow.


Cut Back the Old Foliage First in The Spring to Make Pruning Easier:

It is the easiest way to cut back the fern in the spring before the new leaves appear. You should be capable of seeing the tightly rolled fiddleheads, also called crosiers, in a crown on the plant.

Cut the foliage just more than the crown with a sharp pair of gardening shears.


how to prune a boston fern
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • pinterest

Trim off the Dead Branches after the New One Comes in:

On the other hand, you can wait until the new growth comes in to cut off the old fronds.

It is the best way to do this early in the season—shear off the dead branches near the head to make your plant improved and prettier.


  • You can more cut out any older fronds that aren’t dead still but look a little unkempt. As mentioned before, dead or less healthy fronds provide a breeding ground for pests and disease. Keep your plant clean for best health.


Cut off the outer Edges of the Fronds to Develop the Desired shape:

If you do not like the method your fern is shaped, then directly trim off the outer edges up to your liking. You can use sharp scissors or kitchen shears to do the trimming.

  • It is the best way to trim the outer edges after removing yellowing or dead fronds from the leaves.
  • You should keep in mind that the tips turn brown if you cut off the edges.


Trim a Transplanted Fern by Moiety to help it Thrive:

Whenever you move a fern, it needs help getting settled in its new location. Some growers prefer to prune off as many as half of the fronds. this reduces the water your fern needs to support itself.

  • It is the technique that lets the plant focus more attention on getting its roots settled.
  • Don’t worry. One time the plant is settled, it grows back, usually very strong.


Avoid Pruning Right Before Winter:

It can be fascinating to cut off dead or dying fronds at the beginning of winter. However, those fronds help to protect the root crown throughout the winter.

  • In essential words, leaving the old fronds set up can help your plant endure the icy of winter and return in the spring.


Method of Trimming ferns indoors:

 Cut off The Dead Leaflet as They Seem:

Use a fine set of scissors to cut off the leaflet. The dead booklet will be brown or black. Cut them near the base of the brochure, just before the joint. You can use a sharpened pair of scissors or a small team of garden shears.


Remove any Leaflet Infected with Scales:

Scales are small insects that badly attack your plants. They are tiny, reddish-brown, and flat.


  • Whenever scales attack the plant, the leaves will probably turn yellow and may weaken—looking for rankings on the underneath of leaves along the vein or on the stems.
  • Scales can be spread, so remove any leaflet you see with shears or scissors. If you have a bad infestation, you probably desire to throw out the houseplant, so the scales do not expand to other houseplants.
  • Outside ferns also get scales, but you should try controlling them with oil-based spray pesticides instead of pruning.


Chop the Root Runners that will Hangover the Side of the Pot:

Some of the ferns will get runners, slightly like a strawberry plant, except a portion of the plant’s root way.

These will be brown and woody. Cut ferns near the soil in the pot with shears or scissors to raise the health of your plant.

  • These runners are challenging energy from your plant. By cutting them, you allow your plant focus on other vital areas.
  • Note: you might try planting these root runners to grow new plants.


how to prune a boston fern
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • pinterest


Cut Back to the Base if Desired:

If you are not like your plant’s look at all, you can cut it down to just above the crown, much as you do with an outdoor fern. It would help if you used clear and clean scissors to cut off the leaflet.


When & How to Prune a Boston fern

While routine trimming off discolored and unattractive foliage can be performed at any time, you will severe pruning is best skilled in spring or summer. The best time for pruning is during repotting when plants can be drastically cut back. Boston fern responds well to critical pruning, supporting more prolific, bushy growth and correcting dull, leggy growth.

Whenever you prune your Boston fern, you always use clean and sharp pruning shears or scissors. While pruning can be messy, you probably want to move the plants outdoors or place an old sheet in the area to grab the cuttings.

You don’t need to crop the top of the plant when pruning Boston fern. You also have to remove old, discolored brochures near the soil to permits new growth to come through. Remove the unattractive stems to the ground as well. Cut the remaining part of the plant along the outer edges to the desired shape.


Also, you also should cut the entire plant back to the base if it is necessary.


To Summarize, How to Prune a Boston Fern

This method of pruning and trimming the Boston Fern plant should help you maintain a full and healthy plant. Keep your plant clean, pruned, and well-cared for. This proper care ensures your plant continues as a beautiful and robust feature in your home or on your patio for years to come.


Read More

Boston Fern Houseplant

Boston Fern Care

How to Propagate the Boston Fern

Re-Pot a Boston Fern


Flowering Red Anthurium Bonsai

12 Flowering Bonsai Trees

Evolution of Boston Fern Varieties (


  • facebook
  • twitter
  • pinterest


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Great gift idea!

Bonsai Trees

Affiliate Disclosure

This website contains affiliate links. Any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I use these commissions to help maintain this site to provide helpful information to you.



error: Content is protected !!
sun-loving houseplants

Join the HousePlantJoy Newsletter

You will receive our newsletter and updates.

We promise to only deliver quality information to you with NO spam.

We never sell or distribute your information!

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest