Davallia Species, Rabbit's Foot Fern, Lacy Paw, Fijian Hares' Foot Fern

Davallia fejeensis

Family: Davalliaceae
Genus: Davallia (dav-VAL-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: fejeensis (fee-jee-EN-sis) (Info)
Synonym:Davallia fijiensis
Synonym:Davallia solida var. fejeensis
Synonym:Odontoloma fijiensis
Synonym:Stenolobus fejeensis




Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade


Grown for foliage



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:


Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Eight Mile, Alabama

Gurley, Alabama

Satsuma, Alabama

Clayton, California

El Cerrito, California

El Segundo, California

Huntington Beach, California

Santa Monica, California

South San Francisco, California

Stockton, California

Thousand Oaks, California

Windsor, California

Apopka, Florida

Bartow, Florida

Brandon, Florida

Coleman, Florida

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida

Keystone Heights, Florida

Lake City, Florida(2 reports)

Lecanto, Florida

Pompano Beach, Florida

Port Charlotte, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Sarasota, Florida

Sebastian, Florida

Vero Beach, Florida

White Springs, Florida

Winter Springs, Florida

Yulee, Florida

Honolulu, Hawaii

Chicago, Illinois

Bloomfield, Iowa

Lafayette, Louisiana

Marlborough, Massachusetts

Rapid River, Michigan

Ithaca, New York

Lake Pleasant, New York

Asheville, North Carolina

Keno, Oregon

Greenville, South Carolina

Hollywood, South Carolina

Pickens, South Carolina

Signal Mountain, Tennessee

Groves, Texas

Shelton, Washington

Skokomish, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 12, 2018, jimrail from Garabr,
Iceland wrote:

My mother had a davallia growing in Sacramento, California, throughout the year where the temperature rarely drops below freezing. On one of my visits from Iceland, where I live, I took a cutting home to see if a davallia could survive in a different condition. I potted two cuttings which rooted which was a promising start. I have a sun room which is not heated but temps jump up to 90 F in sunny conditions because of the greenhouse effect. The test was to see if the ferns could make it through the winter with temps down to 30 F and only 5 hours of daylight for 3 months. Yes, the plants managed to adjust to the major change of temperatures and light. The davallia has been an interesting addition to my sun room with limited attention as most of the writers have stated.


On Sep 27, 2017, lightyellow from Ponte Vedra Beach, FL wrote:

Easiest house fern I've ever cared for and also rather unique (with the hairy light "rabbit feet"). It makes a better beginner fern than the "Boston fern" in my opinion and has bounced back several times after being allowed to completely dry out.

Their "feet" can easily be cut and propagated to make new plants to give to friends.


On Oct 17, 2015, sunkissed from Winter Springs, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

I have no idea how I acquired this fern in my garden, but I've had it for many many years probably a good decade or more. Somehow it was in my wheelbarrow planter and it took over with the hairy roots, so I took the mass of soil out one year and dumped it on the ground, where it continues to grow.
I did put some in a hanging pot and keep it under a nice shady oak tree. I'm in zone 9b and it has survived many nights at or even below freezing. If it does freeze on ground level it comes back up each year. The hairy roots are more interesting than the delicate fern. Mine does get some fall like color when temps start to dip cooler.


On Jun 5, 2011, 5thgenFLgirl from Bradfordville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

We inherited a small patch of this lovely plant in a rockery when we bought this house in 1994. It has gradually spread into an architectural feature at the top of a short path. It is tough and beautiful, tolerating Tallahassee's heat and cold w/o complaint.


On Jul 23, 2010, bsimpson1972 from Chicago, IL (Zone 6a) wrote:

A very nice, little fern. Grows pretty fast for me. I feed it with a weak solution of whatever I have. It seems to be pretty tough. When I bought it, it was in bad shape - totally dried out and with quite a few dead or dying fronds. I bought it anyway and you can see the result in the picture. I also cut off a piece of rhizome by accident and used it as a cutting, which promptly rooted and now almost completely fills a 3-inch-pot... A very nice plant for a bright, window!


On Jun 5, 2010, Diane9247 from Keno, OR wrote:

I inherited my fern from my grandmother, who died about 20 years ago. It's about 40 years old and completely imbedded in the big pot she put it in. It has done best hanging outdoors when I've lived in the San Francisco Bay Area of CA, and its furry legs hung down two feet from the lip of the pot. Fronds were so thick that it looked like a big, fuzzy green ball. It came from my grandma's house in southern Oregon, where for her it was a houseplant.

Now, I live in Oregon, same area she lived in, and her fern has come full-circle. To get it moved up here I had to give it a substantial trimming - and it still weighs a ton! It has survived 2 winters inside, 2 summers outside. We have a very short growing season (last frost can be mid-June, first one can be in late August, s... read more


On Oct 3, 2009, mswestover from Yulee, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

I have mine in tall pot, it is now pot bound. Very hard to move in the winter to get it in the garage. Lacy fronds. Water it about once a week. Under drifting shade.


On Feb 12, 2009, labienlien from Tawas City, MI (Zone 5a) wrote:

Just fell in love with and purchased Davallia fajeensis while in Key West, FL and really enjoyed all your comments and experiences which will be a big help when it goes home to MI.


On Aug 29, 2007, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

There is a "giant " variety of Davallia fejeensis that is a awesome looking fern with 14-16"? fronds that hang down in a thick curtain. It's more tender to cold and slower growing than the rest.Very choice. Worth searching for....


On Aug 29, 2007, Cretaceous from El Sobrante, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

Davallia fejeensis is native to Fiji, and the Austral Islands (French Polynesia).


On Apr 14, 2006, Dave_in_Devon from Torquay,
United Kingdom (Zone 9b) wrote:

I love this fern, even more so after finding it will happily tolerate our climate here in south west England. The delicately lacey, apple-green fronds belie its astonishing resilience and have not only withstood the occasional drop to minus 2C (28F), but also bitter and persistent winds over several winters. It is usually offered as a pot plant here, but even tiny rooted pieces rapidly make nice specimens in hanging pots. I've just pinned a few rhizomes to the trunk of one of my tree ferns, where it should run about quite happily.


On Jan 25, 2005, CatskillKarma from West Kill, NY wrote:

I inherited one of these from a neighbor that moved to Canada a few years ago. It was already a mature plant when I inherited it. I transferred it (with great difficulty) to a self watering pot. It spends the summer outdoors in the shade where it thrives, then comes inside to a sunny corner where it gets direct light from both the south and west. It flourishes with little attention, despite the fact that my cabin has no central heat and often gets down near 40 degrees when I leave for a few days. I forget to water it frequently. That causes it to lose a few fronds, but no serious damage. The hairy rabbit feet grow and entwine at an incredible rate and are very attractive. It also smells good in a woodsy ferny way. Highly recommended and care free!


On Jan 24, 2005, mosc0022 from Coeur D Alene, ID (Zone 5a) wrote:

I bought a small one at a local store for $4. It's growing in a bright area, but the drapes are often closed. It is extremely versatile - I've gone weeks without watering it and it still will look great. It has grown quite quickly even in these less than ideal conditions.


On Nov 19, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

I've had mine since early in 1998, and now the fuzzy "feet" are curling tendrils, over a foot long, or longer, if they could be stretched out, hanging from a rather small, oblong "Art Deco" glazed ceramic container with no drainage holes, and planted in Miracle Gro potting soil. It has been growing in this particular container for over three years now, and shows no signs yet of being unhappy there.

The first few years I had it, it thrived over the kitchen sink under a florescent grow-light, where it loved the humidity from the sink. But eventually it grew so large that the leaves started to hang down into the sink and be splashed by very hot water, so it had to be moved.

Now it sits diagonally on a corner at the top of a tall book shelf, near a South facin... read more


On Nov 19, 2003, mrsmitty from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

Looks best if potbound. The feet surround the pot like a hairy spider.


On Sep 16, 2003, broozersnooze from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

I had one of these years ago but can't remember what happened to it; just this summer I purchased another one. I noticed on the PDB it is hardy in zone 10/11 so I'll have to take mine in this winter, although I've had plants survive our winters that reportedly would not. Others - oh, well.

My kangaroo fern is native to Australia but has remained outside since I purchased it & it is flourishing so that I divided it into 4 parts in the spring & it already needs it again.


On Sep 15, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

One of the easier to grow hanging potted ferns. A fast grower but can be a bit on the deciduous side in cold parts of southern California (U.S.)


On Aug 12, 2003, Monocromatico from Rio de Janeiro,
Brazil (Zone 11) wrote:

My grandpa grows this fern for 40 years. Its said to be quite water, light and wind sensitive, but its growing strong there. It also sometimes pops up here spontaneously on pots along with my orchids. Its leaves are beautiful so detailed and delicated that it deserves the common name "portuguese lace"


On Aug 26, 2002, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

This is an extremely neat fern. The roots sit in a pot, while it hangs it hairy tarantula-type legs out over the edges. The fronds grow out of the legs. The fronds are very light, airy, beautifully filigreed. Outstandingly beautiful, as well as an oddity that all kids will love to touch and admire.