Antler-like fronds give staghorn fern its common name. It's also known as Elkhorn fern. Staghorns grow as epiphytes in tropical Australia. Epiphytic plants like these are naturally found clinging to trees. That’s because they get their nutrients from the air, forest debris, and rain, rather than the soil.
These impressive specimens are known for their fuzzy, upright, forked foliar fronds that resemble deer antlers, which is why some people call them “elkhorn ferns”.
The leaves sprout from simple roots that are protected by a basal frond also called a shield. These shields start out green, then turn brown as they age.
Stag ferns can live for decades, and over time can grow very large and heavy.
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