Houseplant Care Tips

Various Houseplant Care Tips Including Watering and Lighting Requirements.

Houseplant Care Tips

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Phoenix Palm Plant Care

Common Name: Phoenix Palm
Scientific Name: Pigmy Date Palm
Lighting: Moderate
Water: Moderate to Low

The Phoenix Palm is characterized by light arching feather-like fronds in dark green color. The Phoenix Palm looks similar to the Kentia Palm except the Phoenix foliage is smaller in width and daintier in appearance. This palm is usually a very good indoor houseplant which requires little care.

Phoenix Palms grow best in bright, indirect sunlight, so place within 3 to 5 feet of a window, preferably an east window. If plant begins to show yellow or black spot on the foliage, try moving it further away from the window. It may be receiving too much direct sunlight and actually be burning the plant.

The Phoenix Palm prefers to stay moist, however do not let the plant stand in water. Usually a good thorough watering once a week is sufficient. If your plant begins to droop, chances are you are under watering it. If you continue to under water you plant, the plant may never return to its normal shape and appearance. If the tips of the foliage begin to turn black or yellow, you are probably over watering your palm. Reduce how often you water. Usually wait until soil is dry to touch 2 inches deep. Like most palms, this plant prefers higher humidity levels, therefore a misting a couple times a week is good.

If new growth is damaged, sometimes it can be very difficult to get your palm back to its original healthy appearance. You may prune off the tips if they have turned yellow or black to help the plants appearance along.

Please share your experiences and tips by commenting below!!!


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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Kentia Palm Care

Common Name: Kentia Palm, Sentry Palm, Thatch Leaf Palm
Scientific Name: Howeia Forsteriana
Lighting: Moderate
Watering: Moderate

The Kentia Palm is characterized by a series of arching feather-shaped fronds radiating from small trunks in a dark green color. Kentia Palms are slow growers so do not expect mass growth. On the other end, they are very durable house plants and therefore can be enjoyed for many years.

Kentia (Sentry, Thatch Leaf) Palms are not tolerable to severe dryness or continual over watering. They prefer to be moist much of the time, however do allow the top 1 to 2 inches of soil to dry before watering again. If frond tips are turning brown and the fronds are droopy, you are probably not watering the plant enough. On the opposite side, if the leaf tips are yellowing then becoming brown, chances are you are over watering the palm. The Kentia, like many palms, is extremely sensitive to chemicals in the water. Therefore be sure to use untreated water for this house plant and all your palms.

The Kentia palm prefers bright, indirect light but will also tolerate lower light levels. In lower light levels the plant's appearance will seem fine; however it just won't quite have the healthy look preferred. If you notice spotting on the upper fronds, the plant may be getting too much bright light, so try and move it to an area with a lower amount of direct sunlight.

Pests are usually not a problem with this house plant. Spider mites may appear. If so, try my home remedy that really hasn't failed me, of spraying the plant twice a day with a soapy dishwater mixture. If that does not work, go to your local gardening center and they can instruct you on which product to use.

Please share you tips on this common houseplant!!


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