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102 Dunmaglass Road
Glenferness, Midrand

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Adiantum capillus-veneris

Maidenhair Fern

It is believed to be mildly diuretic.

Plant Type:

General Size: small

Flowering Time: summer

Flowering Colour: white

Specifications: container plants | evergreen | semi shade | shade | wetlands

Description

This evergreen groundcover grows to 30 cm high and 20cm wide. It is suitable for all soils types but prefers a well-drained soil which is moist. It can grow in semi-shade or deep shade. It is an ideal plant for containers and is often used in a bathroom. They don’t like to be in a draught. It is medicinal and is used for coughs, colds, pleurisy, bronchitis, catarrh and respiratory ailments and it is believed to be mildly diuretic. It is mystically used by placing the leaves in water in the bedroom as it brings grace, beauty and love. In Europe a drink called Capillaire was considered a favourite drink for the ladies of the court. It is made by boiling 3 cups of sugar in 3 cups of water, the juice of 3 lemons and 3 cups of fern fronds. Boil for about 30 minutes until thick. Cool and bottle. It can be taken neat as a cough syrup or diluted. It also makes a good, warm night time toddy if one is tired or cold. Dried leaves are burnt and inhaled for blocked sinus and fresh leaves are stuffed into the shirt for chest problems. The name is derived from the Greek ‘diantos’ which means incapable of being wetted. The leaves of the Maiden Hair fern shed water and will remain dry even in a rain shower.