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Brown Leaves on Crispy Wave: Causes and Cures

Crispy Waves ferns have earned a notable reputation with NASA, proving that Crispy Waves filter out more toxins from the air than other ferns in their genus. However, Crispy Wave’s large leaves can cause unexpected issues. What if your fern starts turning brown?

Brown Tips on Crispy Wave: Causes And Cures

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There can be many contributors to the problem: underwatering, inconsistent watering, direct sunlight, overfertilization, lack of humidity. The list could continue! This leads to frustration because you may not know what is really causing the issue.

You can identify the real reason your Crispy Wave is turning brown by running a few “diagnostics.” Humidity usually plays a role. But, you need to inspect a few of your other habits first.

How to Stop Your Crispy Wave Plant from Turning Brown


Identifying the lighting conditions in your fern’s environment is easily achievable. Start by carefully considering the current placement of your Crispy Wave. Is your plant setting in direct or indirect sun?

Crispy Waves naturally grow under the cover of jungle trees. However, you should not place your fern in full shade or complete darkness. Remember, in nature, they experience shade and dabbled, bright light through the jungle canopy. Place your fern in an area that has indirect, filtered light. This will ensure that the lighting isn't contributing to your Crispy Wave plant turning brown.

Never place your Crispy Wave in direct sun. The leaves will quickly become sunburnt, causing brown tips and patches.


"Watering" can be broken down into two categories: "moisture" and "habits." Carefully consider your watering habits. For example, on average, how moist do you keep your Crispy Wave’s soil? Do you ever allow your Crispy Wave to dry out? Your fern flourishes when it stays evenly moist. Accomplish this by providing it with frequent, light watering. Consistently allowing your plant to dry out between waterings will contribute to your Crispy Wave turning brown.


Too strong or too much fertilizer will contribute to your Crispy Wave turning brown; in fact, overfertilization will burn your plant's leaves. The ideal fertilization schedule is listed below:

  • Growing Season (April-September): Half-strength, once a month.

  • Dormant Season (October-March): No fertilizer, because your fern is rejuvenating from its new growth.

Maintaining Humidity

As noted above, humidity is often a contributor to your Crispy Wave plant turning brown. However, increasing humidity alone will not solve your fern's problem. If you feel that you need to make some of the above adjustments, slowly make them over time.

To prevent your Crispy Wave from turning brown, you need to provide your plant with ample humidity. In the wild, these ferns come from damp jungles. You need to work hard to provide your Crispy Wave with a suitable environment! How can you accomplish this?

A Humidifier

Humidifiers can cost as low as thirty dollars and will exponentially increase the health of your Crispy Wave. Additionally, your other indoor plants will benefit from the extra humidity, as will you!

A Pebble Tray

If you are unsure about purchasing a humidifier, start by using a pebble tray. You place pebbles in a deep dish, filling it midway with water, and set your plant's pot on top of the stones. The surrounding moisture will penetrate the leaves of your Crispy Wave plant, preventing it from turning brown.

This method does require maintenance and diligence. Crispy Ferns do not like standing in water, so it is vital that you ensure that you do not place your pot directly in the water. Observe your water levels closely to prevent moisture from wicking into your plant's soil, drowning it over time.

Keep the tray and pebbles clean. Over time, mold and algae will develop. This creates a health threat to your Crispy Wave by introducing harmful funguses and mold. It would be counterproductive to overcome your plant turning brown, only to have a more severe problem with your Crispy Wave.

Rethink the Location

To prevent your plant from turning brown, move your Crispy Wave away from all air vents in your home. Hot and cold drafts negatively affect humidity.

The bathroom and kitchen are the most humid areas of the average household, so consider moving your Crispy Wave to one of these locations.

Take Your Time

You will not produce a precise diagnosis of your plant’s brown leaves if you make numerous changes to your plant's environment and conditions all at once. Going slowly will ensure that you will be making beneficial decisions for your plant and will allow you to reverse any conditions that affect it negatively. While we do not want any of our plants turning brown, remember, it's not the end of your Crispy Wave.

If you choose to change your fern's location, you will also have to change your watering routine. With less ventilation, your plant's soil will not dry out as frequently or consistently. If you do not adjust your habits, your Crispy Wave could easily suffer from root rot.

Crispy Wave ferns are known for being slow growers, so do not worry if you fail to see immediate results. Much of your success will be seen when your plant grows new leaves, which takes time.

You can cut brown tips and leaves off your fern by using sterile scissors. Cut whole leaves down to the base of the plant. Doing so can benefit the overall health of your plant because it has more energy to expend on new, healthy growth.

Whatever you decide, try not to worry. Relax, and enjoy your plant's journey!

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