Beaucarnea is a magnificent indoor tree which many find appealing for its interesting foliage and silhouette. While also being an easy houseplant to care for, the Beaucarnea is making its way up the ranks.
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Below is a general care guide for Beaucarnea plants which can slightly differ depending on variety.
Light & Temperature
Native to the semi-desserts of Central America, the Beaucarnea enjoys full sun. However, when grown indoors it can also thrive in bright indirect light. Make sure that it sits in the brightest location you can find, whether it gets direct sun or plenty of indirect light.
Beaucarneas enjoy warm temperature and areas that don’t get cold. Be sure to choose a location away from air vents and drafts.
Watering, Humidity & Misting
Beaucarnea don’t need excessive water due to their desert climate adaptations. The general rule of thumb is to allow their soil to completely dry out between waterings. Be careful not to overwater the plant.
Watering once every 10 to 14 days is a good gauge for the Beaucarnea. Make sure the soil is almost completely dry before watering again.
Soil and Repotting
Use a cactus mix that has efficient drainage.
If you wish to grow the plant bigger, make sure to repot the Beaucarnea into a bigger pot once a year. However, if you wish to keep the plant in a manageable size, only repot the plant once every 2-3 years. Beaucarneas will thrive when slightly underpotted in a container that confines the roots.
Beaucarneas sometimes develop offsets ("pups") from the base, which can be removed and potted up individually. However, this is usually difficult as there is a lack of roots on the offsets. Using a rooting hormone can greatly help to stimulate new root growth on the offset.
Use a balanced fertiliser. Follow directions on the label of plant food.
Beaucarneas are non-toxic and therefore safe around kids and/or pets.
Under the right care and conditions, your plant will grow happy and healthy. But here are some issues you may encounter while caring for a Beaucarnea:
Yellowing or browning leaves - This is a sign of over or underwatering. However, with the Beaucarnea it is usually overwatering. If possible, move the plant to a brighter spot and adjust your watering schedule.
Spidermites, mealybugs and scales - When spotted, wipe the leaves with a soft cloth with warm, soapy water or neem oil. If caught early, using cotton swabs and rubbing alcohol may be more effective.
Droopy yellow leaves and mushy sections of the plant - This is due to overwatering and possible root rot. Cut away the mushy sections of the plant and repot the plant into fresh soil. Adjust your watering schedule.