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Platycerium madagascariense is an interesting, small platycerium, from Madagascar.  It is essentially a twig epiphyte, and is inhabited by ants, which live in the gaps created by the waffled shield fronds.  Platycerium madagascariense usually occurs with an orchid, Pardalina rhodochila, which sends its roots into the acid, fertile debris left by the ants in the spaces between the shields..

These relationships probably contribute to the difficulty in cultivating Platycerium madagascariense.  In my opinion, it is the most difficult platycerium.

Contrary to most available information, Platycerium madagascariense prefers fairly cool temperatures.


The orchid above, Pardalina rhodochila often grows with wild Platycerium madagascariense.  The orchid roots fill the spaces created by the waffled shields, and ants live in the voids.