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Growing Indoor Palm plants – A Full Guide

Introduction: Hello gardeners we are here today with an excellent guide of growing indoor palm plants.Palm plants include both tropical and subtropical plants and when grown indoors, bring a sense of the tropics and an exotic feel to your home. Palms grown indoors require proper care to thrive and produce the large fan or feathered leaves, depending on species. When caring for indoor palm plants, the plant needs the correct amount of light, fertilizer, water and correct temperature to prevent foliage problems, such as brown leaves.

A step by step guide to growing indoor palm plants

When you choose to grow a palm tree indoors you should remember that unlike an in-ground palm, potted plants depend on you for all their care and nutrients. When successfully grown, indoor palm trees add a tropical look to the home, even in the dead of winter.

Growing conditions about indoor palm plants

Growing Conditions of Indoor Palm Plants.
Growing Conditions of Indoor Palm Plants.
  • Pot your indoor palm tree in potting soil that drains well. Good potting soil for palm plants is a mixture of half peat moss and half perlite. The pot should always contain a hole at the bottom for excess water to drain out. One of the reasons palm plants are such common houseplants is that they can simply adapt to low light conditions indoors.
  • Most palms are tolerant or prefer the shade, and will suffer if they obtain any direct sunlight. Low light palm houseplants choose bright indirect light but will tolerate less light, especially during the winter. Palms will not survive if there is no natural light in the room, in this case, you will need a grow light.
  • Place the palm plant near a window where it receives lots of sunlight. Keep your palm plant in the pot it came in for two years, as they often do not outgrow their original pots until the two-year mark.
  • The best soil for palm plants growing in pots is a loose, porous soil mix, such as a combo of peat moss, leaf mold, and shredded bark. You can buy cactus and palm soil mix specifically made for growing palm plants, otherwise, they will grow just fine in a general-purpose commercial potting soil.
  • Indoor palm plants require warm temperatures. The ideal temperature is between 60 and 70°F during the day and about 60°F at night. The exception to this is when plants are not actively growing, in the winter season. In winter, the palm plants can withstand the cooler temperature of 55 to 60°F. Palms that are kept too cool show signs of cold injury, which contains brownish-red areas on the leaves. To prevent chilling injury, keep plants in a room with a temperature range above 45°F and away from drafty areas, such as near air-conditioning units, windows, and doors.
  • Fertilize your potted palm plant to ensure it is getting enough nutrients. Select a fertilizer that is specifically made for palm trees and mix it in with the soil. Apply fertilizer once every 6 to 8 weeks during the growing season. Begin fertilizing again in the spring when the palm plant starts a new growing cycle.
  • Water your palm plant weekly. Do not let the soil dry out, but if it is already soggy and moist when you go to water the palm plant, you do not need to water as much that week. Mist the entire plant every couple of weeks, to remove dust from the plant leaves that would wash away in the rain if the plant were outdoors.
  • Palm plants are tolerant of being under-watered, but they will produce their best when watered regularly. Ideally, palm plants prefer it when their soil is kept evenly moist, particularly during the summer months. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between watering in the summer. During the winter season, you can let the soil dry out a bit more between watering.
  • Good drainage is essential for growing palm plants. Just because palm plants live in warm, sometimes tropical regions do not mean they are water plants. Many palms produce best in slightly sandy soil with perfect drainage. Never let a palm plant root ball sit in water.
  • Place the palm tree in an area of your home that is not overly dry and avoid using air-conditioners or de-humidifiers. In the winter, place the palm tree in an area that is far from any heating ducts, fireplaces or other warm and dry areas in the home. Put a pan of rocks nearby and pour water over the rocks to release moisture into the air.
  • Monitor the growth of your palm plant once per year so you can move it to a larger pot when necessary. Eventually, the palm plant will need to be re-potted every two years.

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Houseplant pests on indoor palm trees

Spider mites are a common pest that can attack indoor palm plants. Keeping the humidity level high in the air around the plant will help to fend off spider mites and will benefit the plant. Houseplant scale and mealy bugs can be a problem but are much less common.

If you find that palm plant has bugs, begin treatment immediately. Don’t use chemical pesticides on houseplant pests though, they aren’t effective.

Pruning procedure of palm plants

Indoor palm plants can be pruned to keep them looking nice, and to keep their shape. Pruning off any old yellow, brown or spotted plant leaves regularly is a good habit to get into, and will keep you palm plant looking its best.

It’s common for the lower leaves of palm plants to turn yellow or brown with age. If your plant is full, you can prune off the old, small leaves around the bottom by simply cutting the fronds back to the stem of the palm plant.

You don’t need to remove the whole frond if it just has brown tips, however, otherwise looks healthy. Brown tips of palm leaves can be pruned off any time to keep the palm plant looking nice. Since palm plant leaves are so thin, use a sharp pair of pruners like bonsai pruning shears or micro-tip pruners for trimming palm plants.

List of indoor growing palm plants

Some list of palms for indoors can be given below;

Chinese fan palm

The Chinese fan palm is widely grown indoors. However, it is easy to produce in pots and looks beautiful with its big nearly circular fan-shaped leaves. Chinese fan palm is also known as fountain palm.

The star-shaped leaves of the Chinese fan palm set it apart from other palms that have the more classical feathery frond leaves. Chinese fan palm plants do well in bright light, but younger plants tolerate shady locations. Water when the top of the soil feels dry and choose a large pot that will accommodate the long taproot that the Chinese fan palm produces. Feed this palm plant once a year in the spring with a slow-release fertilizer. The leaves of Chinese fan palm plants are large, nearly circular-shaped, which are partly segmented and can be 3-4 feet long. Soil should contain a good potting mix and should be well-drained. However, Chinese fan palm tolerates many different growing media.

Areca Palm

The is one of my favourite growing indoor palm plants. Areca Palm is one of the favorites and popularly grown indoor palms plants today. Areca Palm also is known as the bamboo palm, is popular because of its soft fronds and tolerance of low light. The areca palm plant prefers a moderate amount of water, although it does tolerate occasional drought. Plant your areca palm plant in fertile soil, and give it a monthly fertilizer application to maintain a lush look. Areca palm plant is one of the most favorite and popular grown indoor palms plants today. Planting the Areca palm with the help of seeds is a time-consuming process, and needs a lot of care. It would be easier to produce from offsets or buy one from our site, or a nearby nursery. Areca palm plant loves high humidity and low water.

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Majestic palm

The majestic palm plant has two positive qualities that make it ideal as an indoor houseplant; it is shade tolerant, and it is a slow grower. However, you should be aware of two drawbacks of this palm: it needs constant moisture and humidity, and it will outgrow an indoor space over time. If you can keep majestic palm in a reasonably moist area, like the kitchen, then you can look forward to cultivating a graceful stand of dark green fronds that will add life to an empty corner of your home.

Cascade palm

The cascade palm plant is also known as the cat palm, is primarily grown as an indoor tree. Its large, dark green fronds give dense foliage. These plants grow to about 3 feet tall and produce shrubby growth along the short trunks, making them a bushier palm variety compared to single trunk types. These palm plants naturally grow near streams and freshwater sources in warm climates, so they have higher moisture needs than other palm varieties. Provide cascade palm plant with indirect light. Direct sunlight can scorch the plant leaves and cause rapid moisture loss.

Fishtail palm

This tropical palm plant is one of the easiest indoor palm plants to grow, requiring little care. Growing fishtail palm plants indoors is relatively easy as long as you provide the right conditions. When you first purchase an indoor fishtail palm plant, it’s important to inspect the root structure. This palm is more tolerant of drier soil than wet. Put it in a container with a drainage hole and water thoroughly then allow the soil to dry slightly between watering. Repot when roots grow out of the bottom of the drainage hole. Move it to a pot only slightly larger; this palm plant prefers to be slightly pot-bound. Give your palm plant bright, indirect sunlight during the growing season.

Ruffled fan palm

Ruffled fan palm plant has beautiful and elegant corrugated leaves which are dark green, pleated and fan-like structure. The plant leaves are articulated on a trunk, which is small in diameter when compared to leaves, making them top-heavy. The ruffled palm plant can grow up to 20 feet and produces a small yellow flower which becomes red almost burgundy color when ripe.

Ruffled fan palm plant is the best choice plant for indoor containers. This palm is super easy to grow and can be propagated through seeds or saplings. The seeds germinate faster when they are fresh and they can germinate in 2 months with a cute looking leaf.

Parlor Palms

Parlor Palm is a popular houseplant with rich green, slightly arched and slender leaves. Care for Parlor Palm plants is moderately easy and these plants require an evenly moist environment with moderate humidity. Parlor palm plant prefers areas with high humidity. The soil around a Parlor palm must be evenly moist. Water freely during the growing season, however, reduces the frequency of watering during the winter. The Parlor palm plant grows in average indoor light (or even artificial light) and temperatures and requires no pruning other than an occasional tidying of spent branches. Parlor palms flourish in above average humidity and could attract spider mites if conditions are very dry.

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Ponytail palm

Ponytail palm plants prefer to have as much light as possible, so place the plant in a bright location. Bright, indirect sunlight is best for growing ponytail palm. Ponytail palm plants will remain small if kept in a small pot. Growing ponytail palms in the home are simple. Technically, a ponytail palm plant needs bright light, but because it is such a forgiving plant, it will be okay if you give it bright light about half the time. When growing ponytail palm as a houseplant, you must let the soil dry out significantly in between watering.

Ponytail palms need to be fertilized two or three times per year. Any more than this and the plant can develop brown tips on the leaves. Ponytail palm care is easy and growing ponytail palms as a houseplant is a great way to add a stunning and visually interesting plant to almost any room.

Sago palm

The sago palm plant is a popular houseplant known for its feathery foliage and ease of care. Sago palm plants are easy to care for but do require special needs, such as bright light, although they will tolerate low-light conditions. Sago Palms prefer high humidity so you can need to place a humidifier near the palm if the air in your home is very dry. Sago palm plants can survive in basic household humidity but will not grow as well.

Sago palm plants are not difficult to grow, but they do require some specific growing conditions. It prefers bright indirect light. Avoid placing them in direct sunlight in the summer season. Keep the soil moist throughout spring and summer and reduce watering in the winter. Sago palms do not tolerate too much water and it’s best to allow the plant to dry out between watering.

Yucca palm

Yucca plants do best in a partly shaded location that receives bright and indirect light. Although yucca plants can grow in sunnier spots, their appearance could suffer from brown tips or white spots on their leaves. Yuccas do not require high-quality soil, but it needs to be well-draining. Though, it still needs to be heavy enough to hold the plant upright. Yucca plant soil should retain water well. Yucca plants produce best in bright indirect light. Yucca can survive indoors in lower light but will need little water. The slow-growing yucca will be even slower to make new leaves in low to medium light. An ideal location for yucca plant is near a west, east, or south-facing window.

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