I forgot to bring my Boston fern in one night and the temperature went below freezing. It was outside for eight hours, with some green leaves but mostly brown. Will it come back or did I kill it?
The Gardener’s Answer
Hello, Gina in Pennsylvania: As gardeners this is something we are all guilty of so don’t be too hard on yourself. Hopefully the damage was just to the foliage and not the roots but really only time will tell. If the roots were not affected, then it will eventually put on some new growth but it may take a good bit of the growing season before it looks lush again. If no signs of new growth appear in the next couple of weeks it is not worth keeping. Depending on your investment to this plant you may just want to purchase a new one, although this early in the season I would suspect this is a plant you over-wintered. For now you will want to remove all brown foliage and keep the soil moderately moist. If it shows signs of new growth then you might want to give it a dose of your favorite plant food. It is just a waiting game at this point.