Areca palm

Areca palm

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Areca palm


Areca palm (Chrysalidocarpus lutescens) is one of the most widely used palms for bright interiors. It features feathery, arching fronds, each with up to 100 leaflets. These big, bold plants command attention. Keep reading to find out more about growing areca palm in the home. Areca Palm Houseplant Info A full-grown areca palm houseplant is quite expensive, so they are usually purchased as small, tabletop plants. They add 6 to 10 inches of growth per year until they reach a mature height of 6 or 7 feet. Areca palm is one of the few palms that can tolerate trimming without serious harm, making it possible to keep mature plants indoors for their full lifespan of up to 10 years. A key factor in successfully growing areca palm trees indoors is providing just the right amount of light. They need bright, indirect light from a south- or west-facing window. The leaves turn yellowish-green in direct sunlight.

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Although the areca palm can grow as high as 30 feet outdoors, in interior locations, it tends to average only 6 to 7 feet. Long evergreen leaf stems shoot up from golden stalks and arch outward and down. The small white flowers and dark purple oblong fruits can appear year-round. These palms typically grow 6 to 7 inches per year.

Container Considerations

Due to the height of the areca palm, choose a fairly large container for it to grow into. Since garden centers tend to cultivate these plants in bright light, gradually acclimate your areca to the lower light conditions in your home. Place your new plant in its container outdoors in a part-shade location, then move it to a bright indoor location after a few weeks. If the roots fill the pot within a few years, you can re-pot the palm tree or plant it outdoors. New growth springs from a central growing point at the top of a palm tree’s trunk, which means that palms can’t be pruned to reduce their height; pruning can damage or kill the plant. The only recourse if a tree grows too tall is to relocate it to an area with a higher ceiling or outdoors.

Growing Needs

Like other palms, the areca needs filtered light, preferably near a southeast or west-facing window. Use a moist, well-drained soil, and water the plants as soon as the soil feels dry a little below the surface. Areca palms do not respond well to overwatering. Containers need functioning drain holes, and any excess water that collects in a saucer beneath the pot should be removed. Fertilize lightly from late winter through early fall. Areca palms prefer a temperature of 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit at night and between 75 and 85 degrees during the day.

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