The Chamaedorea elegans, sometimes known as the parlour palm, is a species of indoor palm plant that is highly popular and simple to cultivate. It can be grown either indoors or outdoors in USDA plant hardiness zones 10 through 12. These plants, which are also known as parlour palms, have fluffy green leaves and long arching fronds that give the impression that they are grown in a tropical setting. They flourish in situations of indirect light and in temperatures that are ordinary for the room, which makes them an ideal addition to any area that may use a splash of green. Because parlour palms are so hospitable, it is essential to make sure that you provide them the few things that they need in order to thrive.
Chamaedorea Elegans: Clean and Slow
According to the authors of Our House Plants, the parlour palm is one of NASA’s recommended houseplants for enhancing the quality of air found within the home. These plants have the ability to purify the air in your house by removing potentially dangerous microorganisms. Because they are non-toxic, they are an excellent choice for usage in homes that also include children or animals.
According to the staff at The Sill, the parlour palm is a slow grower, requiring many years to reach its full mature size. These plants have the potential to develop to a height of between 2 and 6 feet if they are provided with the appropriate care and environment. The plant will likely produce a few tiny flowers as it develops, which will later develop into a few tiny berry fruits; nevertheless, the blooms do not contribute much to the overall rich aspect of the vegetation. The lush and humid jungles of Guatemala and Mexico are where these palms got their start, but over time they’ve acclimated to the circumstances of an indoor environment.
Parlor Palm Care
The optimal environment for the growth of parlour palms is a container that will keep the roots enclosed. According to the Missouri Botanical Garden, root rot may be caused by soil that holds on to an excessive amount of water, therefore it is important to plant your parlour palm in a container that has drainage holes. Try to find potting soil that contains peat, or create your own by combining peat with sand and keeping the resulting mixture relatively light. You may also facilitate drainage by using a layer of gravel or tiny pebbles as the base layer of your project. Make sure the container includes a hole in the bottom for drainage that leads to a drip tray. If you place the pot inside of another pot that is more beautiful, you will need to make sure that the decorative pot also has sufficient drainage. If it does not, you will end up with standing water in between the two pots, which will cause the roots to rot.
HortZone suggests positioning the palm in a spot where it will get bright yet indirect sunshine. The leaves may char if there is too much direct sunlight, while the plant’s development can be stifled if there is too much shade. You may bring the palm outdoors for limited times throughout the summer, but you will need to make sure that it is shielded from the sun’s rays completely. During the warm summer months, the palm tree may benefit from this by receiving a burst of developing vitality.
When it comes to watering, it is preferable to err on the side of less rather than more; parlour palms are susceptible to overwatering, which again results in root rot. Because the palm tree’s roots are delicate to begin with, an extended period of overwatering can be detrimental to the entire plant. Because of this, it is essential to use a container that has adequate drainage. When you water the palm tree, make sure that the excess water drains into the drip tray that is situated beneath the container. After you are finished, be sure to empty the drip tray so that the excess water does not pool. Check the top inch of the soil and wait to water the plants until it feels completely dry before you do so. In the summer, these plants should be watered around once a week on average. It is possible that you may only need to water the plant once every few weeks throughout the winter, when development is slower. When it is time to water the plant, you will notice that the leaf fronds have begun to turn a yellowish colour. This will alert you to the fact that the plant needs water.
Humidity, Fertilizer and Pruning
According to the NC State Extension, while parlour palm plants are thought to have evolved in rainforests with high humidity, you do not need to give them with a considerable amount of humidity in order for them to survive; rather, a humidity level of medium would work well. Make sure the plant is not situated in an area of the house that receives very little humidity, such as next to a radiator or a heating vent that is operational. If you place the plant container on top of a drip tray filled with pebbles, the surplus water will collect in the stones and then gently evaporate around the plant. This will provide the plant’s leaves with humidity while preventing the surrounding surroundings from being too saturated. You may also use a plant mister to spray the leaves regularly, which has the added advantage of keeping the leaves clean and shining. This is an alternative method.
Fertilization is necessary for parlour palms, although they thrive best with sporadic feedings. There should be a little application of fertiliser every three to four weeks for younger plants that are still establishing growth; alternatively, a slow-release fertiliser may nourish the plant for up to three months before reapplication is necessary. When the palm has achieved its full size, fertilising it once or twice throughout the summer should be sufficient for maintaining its health. In either scenario, you should avoid applying too much fertiliser during the winter, when the palm is in its dormant phase. Doing so runs the danger of an accumulation of unneeded fertiliser, which may lead to the formation of a variety of salts that are harmful to the parlour palm.
According to Our House Plants, the parlour plant is not one of the plants that benefits from regular trimming. The loss of healthy leaves and stems may shock the plant and cause harm to the whole system. You will want to remove any stems that have gone brown or yellow, as well as any stems that have died of their own accord. In any other case, you shouldn’t bother the plant. Although it is possible to replicate these palms by removing one of the stems from the others and replanting it, doing so may result in the death of the leaves on the original plant as the latter adapts to the change.
Repotting a Parlor Palm
Because parlour palms have delicate root systems that thrive in the confines of a pot and do not appreciate having their roots disturbed on a regular basis, the size of the pot in which they are grown is very important. Parlor palms should only be repotted once it is clear that they have outgrown their previous container. According to My Domaine, the only time you should repot a Chamaedorea elegans is when the plant’s roots have completely filled the container in which they are growing. Young palms may need to be moved into larger pots once a year, depending on how robust their growth is; however, older plants will only need to be moved when the soil needs to be replenished, which may happen anywhere between two and three years after the plant was first planted.
To repotte an existing plant, first follow the steps outlined in the previous section to prepare the new container. The new pot should have a porous bottom and be filled with loose soil. Remove the parlour palm from its present container in a careful manner. Depending on the size of the palm, this may be difficult to handle; you may need an additional set of hands to complete the task.
Tilt the container while holding the palm’s stems with one hand, with the palm resting on the surface of the soil in the container. When it begins to tilt, use another hand to tap it softly in order to dislodge the roots. When the root ball begins to emerge, you should use your fingers to gently disentangle any roots that may have been tangled as a result of the size restrictions imposed by the previous container.
Completing the Repotting Process
Put the palm into the new pot, and then fill the area around it with the soil mixture you prepared earlier. It is important not to lay the root ball any deeper in the new pot than it was in the previous pot since this might cause harm to the root system. The root ball and the central part of the plant should be firmly established in their new home by packing dirt tightly around the stems of the plant. After the palm has been transplanted, give it a good watering, being sure to saturate the soil to the point where water begins to appear on the drip tray. When you are done, move the palm back into its original position.
Since repotting the plant too regularly might cause harm to the delicate root ball, you may want to try just removing the top few inches of soil and replacing it with new soil after the soil has aged. This is because repotting the plant too frequently can cause damage to the root ball. This eliminates the potential danger associated with transplanting the whole plant. The spring is the ideal time to repot a parlour palm into a new container since this allows the plant to take advantage of the favourable growth conditions of the summer, allowing it to rebuild itself and continue developing.