The Q&A Archives: would you help me with my palms?

Question: Hi, my name is silvanna and I love indoor plants. I even can say that I'm very lucky with them, but since I've moved into a house that doesn't have a indoor porch all my palms started to get brown leaves and they seem like they are going die. I've tried put them in the kitchen which has more light but it was worse. I dont know what can I do to not let them die. I hope you can help me I'll be waiting for your answer, thanks.

Answer: It sounds as though your palms are unhappy with the light they are receiving and they may be unhappy with the dry indoor air. Here are a few tips for growing healthy palms indoors:

Most palms need bright natural light year-round. Filtered light near a south-east-or west-facing window is suitable for most indoor palms.

Palms need to be kept moist. They should never be allowed to dry out or allowed to stand in water. Excessively wet soil can lead to root rot. Water thoroughly when the surface of the soil dries and discard the water in the saucer after the pot drains. Soil mixes for palms must be porous with plenty of organic matter to ensure both adequate moisture and excellent drainage.

Palms grow best with warmth. Protect them from drafts near doors, windows and air conditioning. Most palms prefer temperatures of 60 ? F at night and between 70 and 80 ? F during the day. Many palms will benefit from cooler temperatures of 55 to 60 ? F during the winter, when not actively growing.

Regularly rinse the foliage to clean the leaves and leach excess fertilizer salts from the soil. Wash the plant with a hard, fine spray of lukewarm water in your shower, or outside during warm weather, to keep insects such as scale, thrips and mites under control. Also, set plants outside during summer rainstorms to rinse the foliage.

Palms, like many houseplants, benefit immensely from spending the summer outside. When they are moved outside for the summer, gradually accustom them to higher light levels. Indoor palms should not be placed in direct sun while outside.

Fertilize either with a dilute liquid fertilizer or use a slow-release fertilizer in the container. Fertilize only while the plant is actively growing. Excess fertilizer can be harmful to palms.

Palms do best when their roots are confined and may only need re-potting every two to three years, if roots fill the pot. Repot when needed in spring or early summer. Most palms are propagated from seed. Some can be divided to create new plants.

Do not use any of the leaf shining products on palms as they can severely injure the foliage.

Hope this information is helpful to you.

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