Parlor Palm Care Top Tips
The Parlour Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) is a classic house plant. It has been a firm favourite since Victorian times when it was typically given prominent display in the parlour, where guests would be entertained. This attractive and elegant plant has light green leaves that feather out from slim stems. It is also known as the Good Luck Palm, Dwarf Mountain Palm, or Chamaedorea Palm.
The Parlor Palm is a wonderfully low-maintenance and pet-friendly plant. It’s a slow grower so is perfect if you don’t have much space. But, like all plants, there are things you can do to keep it looking and feeling its absolute best! Read on to learn everything you need to know about Parlor Palm care.
Yes, the Parlor Palm is a low-maintenance plant, but that doesn’t mean you can completely neglect it! Here are our top tips for Parlor Palm care:
1. Parlor Palm Light Conditions
Lesson one in Parlor Palm care? Lighting conditions! Low light can be tolerated, but a deep shade or a lack of light will not make your Parlor Palm a happy plant. Parlor Palms like to be warm and your room should ideally be around 18-24°C. The minimum temperature should be 10°C.
Keep your Parlor Palm out of direct sunlight, but make sure it gets plenty of bright, indirect light.
Note that harsh, direct sunlight will scorch the leaves over time. We like to keep our Parlor Palms near windows that receive a bit of morning or late afternoon sunlight. You don’t need to keep your Parlor Palm by a window, and it will grow slower if you don’t, but do make sure it gets some light.
2. Watering Your Parlor Palm
Unsurprisingly, Parlor Palm care involves the essential act of watering your plant. In spring and summer, Parlor Palms only need watering when the top few centimetres of compost feel dry. How often this will happen depends on how warm it is. Make sure you get the compost evenly moist, but not soggy.
In winter, you can reduce the watering further. Overwatering can lead to root rot and the growth of fungi. It’s better to under-water a Parlor Palm than over-water it, but the best Parlor Palm care should be about getting it just right.
3. Parlor Palms and Humidity
Good Parlor Palm care includes ensuring that the air around your plant isn’t too dry. Whilst Parlor Palms are less fussy about humidity levels than other kinds of palm plants, they still don’t want to be placed next to a working radiator. If Red Spider Mites are a problem in your home, make sure your humidity isn’t too low. In this case, you might want to use a small humidifier in the room.
4. Parlor Palm Propagation
Now for a Parlor Palm care tip that will help you multiply your plant! You can propagate your Parlor Palm through division, but you need to be extra careful when dividing your plant.
When you repot your plant, you’ll see that the plant is made up of many stems that have their own roots. Sometimes a stem breaks away naturally and you’ll be able to pot that into a new home. Alternatively, you can cut a stem or section off using a knife. You need to ensure that the section you remove has some roots. Then, simply transport it to a fresh pot full of houseplant compost and follow our instructions for Parlor Palm care.
It’s worth noting that if your Parlor Palm has flowered and produced fruits, you can use the seeds from the fruits to grow more. To do this, you will need to sow the seeds and use a heated propagator. To germinate the seeds, set the temperature to 27°C and then pot into a small container of compost. Parlor Palm propagation is simple when you get the hang of it, and your growing family of Palmer Palms will keep you smiling!
5. Parlor Palm Repotting
Good Parlor Palm care includes knowing when it needs a bigger home. As we’ve already said, Parlor Palms are relatively slow-growers. For this reason, they’re great if you don’t have much space. This also means that your Parlor Palm won’t need repotting that regularly. But, eventually, your Parlor Palm will outgrow its home.
So, when your Parlor Palm looks like it has outgrown its pot, get one that is 2-3 inches bigger. Remove the Parlor Palm from its original pot and slightly loosen the roots. Add a layer of compost to the base of the new pot and put the root ball in. Use compost to fill around the root ball, and press down lightly. Give the plant a good, even watering to ensure the roots make themselves at home!
6. Other Caring Tips
Give your Parlor Palm some liquid food once a month (in spring and summer), to ensure it’s getting enough nutrients. Mist the plant at least twice per week. You can also give the leaves a wipe every so often, to rid them of dust and keep them looking slick. If you’re anything like us, you might want to have a little chat with them as you’re doing so! Don’t pretend you haven’t given your Parlor Palm a name… (OK, that’s next-level Parlor Palm care, but don’t say they’re not worth it!)
7. Parlor Palm Care: Troubleshooting!
Parlor Palms are living things so, like the best of us, they can run into some health-related issues from time to time. Fortunately, with a bit of know-how and TLC, you can most likely nurse your Parlor Palm back to good health. Parlor Palm care involves educating yourself on how to spot the warning signs. Here are a few issues you might run into, and what to do about them:
It’s fairly common for Parlor Palms to develop brown leaf tips. Parlor Palm brown tips are nothing to worry about, it usually just indicates that the air is too dry. It can also indicate that the environment is too cold, or you haven’t given the plant enough water. You can address these conditions where possible, and trim off the Parlor Palm’s brown tips. Just make sure not to cut into the green of the leaves, as this will lead to brown tips forming again. Misting your Parlor Palm a few times per week will help prevent brown tips.
Yellowing leaves on your Parlor Palm are typically seen as the leaves age. The lower leaves tend to go yellow with ageing. If all of your Parlor Palm leaves have turned yellow, it probably means that your plant is getting too much direct sunlight. Try to move it away from the light, and ensure that you are watering your plant enough. Basic Parlor Palm care, which we’ve outlined above, should help prevent yellow leaves.
If your Parlor Palm leaves feel excessively dry, it is also likely that your plant is getting too much direct sunlight. Alternatively, it might not be getting enough water or humidity. As above, move your Parlour Plant out of direct sunlight and check that you are giving it enough water. Regular misting of the leaves will also help prevent Parlor Palm dry leaves.
Parlor Palm Care: The Final Words
As you now know, Parlor Palms are easygoing house plants. Parlor Palms are adaptable and low-maintenance plants, which is why they’ve been so incredibly popular for so long. Parlor Palm care is super simple, and perfect for house plant “beginners”, or those without much time or space. Follow our Parlor Palm care guide and you’ll be engaging in some Parlor Palm propagation in no time. Now, to the parlour!