Staghorn Fern Mounting
My husband had been thinking of getting a staghorn fern to add to our plant collection. He came across this staghorn fern mounting workshop at Crafted Identity, which he thought would kill two birds with one stone (giving me a chance to "make" something that he wanted to get anyway).
The workshop was at a lovely space filled with lots of plant, including a wall of mounted staghorn fern, of course:
Adrian, the instructor, started the workshop with an hour of sharing about staghorn ferns. He was very kind to let my husband join the session together (just to listen, because he's the one who'll be taking care of the plant, while I do the hands-on mounting). Thank goodness he did, because there was so much information on staghorn ferns Adrian shared that I would absolutely not have been able to store in my brain to convey to my husband.
After the theory part of the session, we were brought to look at the various species and hybrids he had, and also to choose the variety of staghorn fern we wanted to mount.
We get a lot of sun at our place in the morning, and wanted to place it outdoors, so we asked Adrian to recommend a one which would have the highest likelihood of surviving in strong morning sun. He recommended the Veitchii Staghorn Fern:
Once we got the plant, the mounting began! We got to choose the backing we wanted to mount on, and we wanted it to look most like it was mounted on a tree, so we chose this piece of corkbark:
After piling on spagnum moss strategically to form a nice mount, Adrian showed us how to hold it place with transparent nylon string. Here I am with the final mounted piece:
Here's the staghorn fern hanging on the wall of our balcony - it has grown two new fronds / leaves in the past 1.5 months!
Details of the workshop
Duration: about 2.5 hours
Price: SGD 138 per pax, booked on the Crafted Identity website
Level of "fun": 3/5
It was an enjoyable afternoon of learning and making - I was surprised at how long the theory part of the session would take, but I turned out having many questions about staghorn ferns as the session started. Adrian is really knowledgeable about the ferns, although it can get a little bit difficult to follow all the scientific names of the ferns (my favourite name was p. elephantotis, and my husband's was p. superbum 😜) as he talks about them.
Choosing a fern and mounting it was fun - we know how angles make all the difference when we take photos, and in the staghorn fern's case, the direction is it mounted (sideways, versus sitting in a pot) really gives it such a different look! It great to see the transformation.
Level of difficulty: 2/5
The theory part was arguably more difficult than the practical part haha. Adrian gave very clear instructions and a demo of how to do each step, and was always on standby to verify if you have done it correctly, that it was hard to go wrong (we had a super small class size that day, with myself and one more other student, so we got a really good amount of attention from Adrian)
There were options to use a drill which I declined (drill holes to in insert the hanging wire, and drill to get the screws into the mounting board) - Adrian drilled the holes for me, and i used a screw to manually screw the screws as the corkbark was quite soft anyway. If you're not confident with the idea of a drill, it isn't absolutely necessary at this workshop.
The wrapping of the nylon string was fairly straightforward - the challenge is to ensure you have a round mount and to try to have the spagnum moss hide the screws which the nylon string is wound around. With Adrian's guidance and supervision, the output turned out great.