How To Propagate Asparagus Fern: A Gardener’s Guide

How To Propagate Asparagus Fern

If you’re a plant enthusiast looking to expand your green family or just want to make the most out of your asparagus fern, you’ve come to the right place! Asparagus fern, known for its delicate fronds and airy foliage, can be a delightful addition to your indoor or outdoor garden. One of the best ways to enjoy its beauty is by propagating it, and in this comprehensive guide, we’ll show you how to do it like a seasoned gardener.

Asparagus fern propagation might sound intimidating, but fear not! With the right knowledge and a little bit of patience, you’ll be able to multiply your asparagus ferns and share their lush elegance with friends and family. Let’s dive into the world of asparagus fern propagation and uncover the secrets to success.

How To Propagate Asparagus Fern?

There are several methods for propagating asparagus fern, each with its unique advantages. We’ll cover the three most common methods: division, root cuttings, and seeds.

1. Division

Division is perhaps the easiest and most common method of propagating asparagus fern. Here’s how to do it:

Materials Needed:

  • Established asparagus fern plant
  • Pruning shears or a sharp knife
  • Pots with well-draining potting mix
  • A trowel


  1. Choose the Right Time: Spring is the ideal time for division when the plant is actively growing. Avoid doing it during the dormant winter months.
  2. Prepare the New Containers: Fill the pots with a well-draining potting mix, leaving some space at the top.
  3. Dig Up the Parent Plant: Gently dig up the parent plant, being careful not to damage the roots.
  4. Separate the Clumps: Use pruning shears or a sharp knife to divide the plant into smaller clumps. Each clump should have a portion of the rhizome (the underground stem) and a few healthy roots.
  5. Plant the Clumps: Plant the separated clumps in the prepared pots. Ensure that the rhizomes are just below the soil surface.
  6. Water and Care: Water the newly potted clumps thoroughly and place them in a bright, indirect light location. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged.
  7. Monitor Growth: As the new plants establish themselves, you’ll notice fresh growth within a few weeks. Continue to care for them as you would for mature asparagus ferns.

2. Root Cuttings

Root cuttings are another effective way to propagate asparagus fern. This method allows you to create new plants from the root system. Here’s how to do it:

Materials Needed:

  • Parent asparagus fern plant
  • Pruning shears or a sharp knife
  • Small pots with well-draining potting mix
  • Plastic bags or plastic wrap


  1. Choose Healthy Roots: Select a healthy asparagus fern plant and dig up a portion of its root system. Look for thick, healthy roots for the best results.
  2. Cut the Roots: Using pruning shears or a sharp knife, cut the selected roots into sections, each about 2 to 3 inches long.
  3. Plant the Cuttings: Fill small pots with well-draining potting mix and plant the root cuttings vertically, burying them about an inch deep.
  4. Cover and Water: Place plastic bags or plastic wrap over the pots to create a mini-greenhouse effect. Water the cuttings lightly and ensure the soil remains consistently moist.
  5. Provide Indirect Light: Place the pots in an area with bright, indirect light. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, as this can scorch the delicate cuttings.
  6. Wait for Growth: Over the next few weeks, you should start to see new shoots emerging from the soil. Once they have grown a few inches, you can remove the plastic coverings.
  7. Transplant: When the new plants have established a healthy root system, transplant them into larger pots or directly into your garden.

3. Propagation From Seeds

Growing asparagus fern from seeds is a less common but rewarding method. It allows you to create new plants with unique characteristics. Here’s how to do it:

Materials Needed:

  • Asparagus fern seeds (can be obtained from mature berries)
  • Seed trays or small pots
  • Seed starting mix
  • Clear plastic cover or plastic wrap


  1. Harvest Seeds: Obtain seeds from mature asparagus fern berries. These berries are bright red when ripe and contain small, black seeds.
  2. Prepare Seed Trays: Fill seed trays or small pots with a seed starting mix. Moisten the mix lightly.
  3. Plant Seeds: Sprinkle the asparagus fern seeds evenly over the surface of the mix and press them down gently. Do not bury them too deep; they need light to germinate.
  4. Cover for Humidity: Place a clear plastic cover or plastic wrap over the seed trays to create a humid environment. This helps with germination.
  5. Provide Indirect Light: Keep the trays or pots in a location with bright, indirect light. Maintain a temperature between 70°F to 75°F (21°C to 24°C) for optimal germination.
  6. Water Carefully: Keep the seed starting mix consistently moist but not waterlogged. Use a spray bottle to mist the surface as needed.
  7. Transplant Seedlings: When the seedlings have developed a few true leaves and are large enough to handle, transplant them into individual pots or your garden.

Why Propagate Asparagus Fern?

You might be wondering why you should bother propagating your asparagus fern when it seems to be thriving on its own. There are several compelling reasons to consider propagation:

Expansion: Propagating asparagus fern allows you to increase the number of plants you have. If you have a single mature plant and you want to have more to decorate different areas of your home or garden, propagation is an economical way to do so.

Sharing: You might want to share your love of gardening with friends or family by giving them a propagated asparagus fern as a gift. It’s a thoughtful and personal present.

Replacement: Asparagus ferns can occasionally suffer from diseases or pest infestations, or they may become too old and leggy. Propagating new plants ensures you have replacements ready in case your existing plant deteriorates.

Experimentation: Some gardeners enjoy experimenting with different propagation methods, such as division, seeds, or cuttings. It can be a fun and educational experience to learn how to propagate a plant successfully.

Healthier Plants: Propagating asparagus ferns can result in healthier, more vigorous plants. Older plants may become root-bound or have depleted soil nutrients, while newly propagated plants can be grown in fresh, nutrient-rich soil.

Customization: If you have a specific vision for your garden or indoor space, propagating asparagus ferns allows you to create more plants that match your design preferences, whether it’s the size, shape, or location of the plants.

Backup: Having propagated plants can serve as a backup plan in case your original asparagus fern encounters unforeseen issues. This ensures that you won’t lose the beauty and benefits of this plant in your space.

Learning Experience: Propagating plants can be a rewarding learning experience. It provides valuable insights into plant growth, care, and horticultural techniques, which can be applied to other plant species as well

Now that you understand the benefits of propagating your asparagus fern let’s move on to the practical steps you can take to achieve this.

Tips For Successful Propagation

  • Choose Healthy Plants: Always select healthy parent plants for propagation to ensure the best chances of success.
  • Use Well-Draining Soil: Whether you’re dividing, using root cuttings, or planting seeds, well-draining soil is essential to prevent root rot.
  • Maintain Adequate Humidity: Keep the propagation environment humid, especially when using the seed method, to promote germination and early growth.
  • Avoid Direct Sunlight: Asparagus ferns prefer bright, indirect light. Direct sunlight can scorch their delicate foliage.
  • Regularly Monitor and Prune: As your propagated plants grow, regularly monitor their health and prune away any dead or yellowing fronds.
  • Patience is Key: Remember that propagation takes time. Be patient and allow your new plants to establish themselves.


Propagating asparagus fern can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience for plant enthusiasts. Whether you choose division, root cuttings, or seeds, understanding the process and providing the right care will lead to successful propagation. With a little patience and some tender loving care, you’ll soon have a thriving collection of these lush, elegant plants to brighten up your indoor or outdoor spaces. Happy gardening!