Growing Areca Palm: Care Of Areca Palms Indoors
What Is A Brown Tip?
Areca palms have several types of leaves, which are called leaflets or lobes. These leafy parts make up the leaves of the plant. They are divided into two groups: (1) the main leaves and (2) the lateral leaves.
The main leaves contain all of the edible fruit, seeds, and other nutritious parts of the plant. The most prominent part of these leaves is their color.
There are many different colors found on these main leaves. Some common ones include greenish yellow, red, purple, white and black.
These leaves are usually dark green in color, but they may appear any shade of green. They do not always look like the one shown above.
Their appearance depends on the variety of the plant and its growing conditions. If you see a leaf with a very light color, it means that there is too much water at that location and it will turn brown quickly.
The leaf shown above is a good example of a healthy areca palm. Its yellow color is clearly visible.
The different shades of green in the plant show that it is also well-balanced.
The areca palm leaf with a brown tip shows that the main leaf has started to wither and die. It may look brown but it can sometimes be yellow or tan the whole way through.
This is a clear indication that it is past the point of saving, because even when you move it to another location, it cannot survive without the nutrition and water that it needs.
These leaves are more common with older areca palms. If there is an insect infestation or bad draining in the pot, then there will be more brown tips than normal.
Watch these leaves carefully and remove them if they are starting to turn brown the entire way through.
These leaves are also susceptible to diseases such as root rot. If you see any discoloration on these leaves then it is a sign that the plant needs more nutrients and a good cleaning of the roots.
The main leaves on your areca palm contain all of the nutritious parts of this plant including its fruit and seeds. These parts can be eaten or prepared in different ways for cooking.
If these leaves turn brown then they are no longer useful to the plant and will soon die.
How To Care For Areca Palms In Your Home
Areca Palms love bright, filtered light. So a bright, sunny window would be perfect for it.
It can also survive in a low lit office, but not in direct light (such as an open window in the sun). It can also be placed outdoors; however, this only applies to Areca Palms that come in pots. Those that are planted directly into the ground should not stay outdoors overnight.
The Areca prefers temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees F. (18-26 C.) but can withstand temps.
up to 100 degrees F. (38 C.) It does not like cold weather and should be brought indoors if the temperatures begin to fall below 60 degrees at night.
Soil should be light and drain easily. A soil mixture of 3 parts peat, 3 parts potting soil and 1 part coarse sand works well for this plant.
You can also add a slow-release fertilizer to the soil mixture. Fertilize the Areca Palm for the first time when it is 6 months old and then yearly after that. Follow the directions on the fertilizer packaging for how much to apply.
This palm does not have many requirements for its soil but it does have one major requirement and that is to be root bound. This means that its root system has filled up its pot completely.
As soon as this happens, you should repot the Areca into a a larger pot. You can do this as early as 6 months after you first plant it, but no later than 2 years. If you don’t, the roots will begin to grow along the soil’s surface and could begin to crowd out the trunk.
The Areca Palm is a very sturdy plant and not prone to disease. It can survive most ailments and even severe root rot if caught in time.
It does not like to be repotted and attempts should be made to not have to do it very often (every 2-3 years).
Follow the instructions listed above for repotting. As a general rule, you should rear out as much of the old soil as you can without pulling off any roots.
Any dead roots that are exposed can then be cleaned off before adding the new soil mixture.
This plant can grow very tall and wide. Therefore, pruning must be kept in mind when growing it.
It can be pruned into an umbrella shape, or tree shaped, or even a small fan shape. The general rule is to not trim off more than 1/3 of the plant at one time.
Pruning can be done at anytime of the year, but spring and summer are the best times. Always remove dead, diseased, or dying foliage first.
Then, you can shape the plant before you actually trim it back. The younger the plant, the more dramatic the results of your pruning will be.
The Areca is a very resilient and forgiving plants. It can withstand many growing conditions from too much water to too little, too much sun to not enough.
It is also very resistant to pests and diseases. It does not like to be repotted and is slow growing.
The most common problem that people have with this plant is keeping it watered enough in humid climates. It will tend to lose its leaves in dry air so make sure the area where you place it has some humidity.
This plant can be grown from seed and takes about 10 months for proper germination. It can also be trimmed and 2 “suckers” or “pups” will grow from the base.
Cut these off and plant them separately.
The stem of the Areca Palm will grow a thick, rough shell that is hard and can be used for many things. The shells have many uses including the following:
Whistle: The shell makes a pretty good whistle if you blow into it the right way.
Knife Handles: They make good and durable knife handles.
Fire Starter: The dry shells will light very easily when rubbed against a piece of sandpaper or steel. The frayed edges will catch fire very easily.
This makes an excellent fire starter.
Fish Scales: The scales are very smooth and glossy. For many species of fish, these scales are used to make jewelry and other decorations.
These shells will only last for a few years before they begin to deteriorate. The inner part of the shell is not strong enough to be used as anything.
It is very weak and brittle. After several years the shell will begin to break into small pieces of bone and become nothing more than a pile of debris in your yard.
The Areca Palm is most often used for decoration or landscaping in tropical and beach type areas. If you are going to be using it for this purpose, you might want to prune it into a fan or umbrella shape and keep the height to about 8-10 feet.
This will make it easier to put in a vehicle and transport somewhere else.
This plant can also be used for shade near swimming pools or patios. It can grow very tall if allowed but is slow enough that it can easily be trimmed to any height desired.
The Areca Palm makes a very tall and impressive center piece for any large room. It is a very attractive plant and the large, dark green leaves can really make a room “pop”.
It is also very easy to care for and maintain.
If you are looking for a tall, sturdy, attractive and easy to care for plant, then the Areca Palm may be just the thing for you. They are available at many nurseries or you can sometimes find them at local home improvement stores.
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Sources & references used in this article:
Areca catechu (betel nut palm) by GW Staples, RF Bevacqua – … for Pacific Island …, 2006 – doc-developpement-durable.org
Indoor medicinal plants: Beneficial biocatalysts for air filtration and bioremediation–A review by L Inbathamizh – International Journal of Green Pharmacy (IJGP …, 2020 – greenpharmacy.info
Influence of different growing media and kristalon chemical fertilizer on growth and chemical composition of Areca palm (Dypsis cabadae HE Moore) plant by YFY Mohamed – Middle East J. Appl. Sci, 2018 – bu.edu.eg