Native to Central America’s emerald jungle, the Parlour Palm brings a dose of the tropics indoors. With its rich-hued leaves, it adds a touch of colour and serenity to any space it is placed in. The Parlour Palm enjoys partial shade, away from direct sunlight, while too much sunlight can cause its leaves to become tinged with yellow.
To ensure it thrives in the summer, feed it two times per week. Typical blooms can be purchased at heights of 25 – 40cm, although they can grow to four times that over time.
The Parlour Palm (botanical name, Chamaedorea elegans) is both low maintenance and unlike other palm species, is able to thrive indoors and out, making it an extremely versatile plant.
Why choose a Parlour Palm: Asides from the fact it is aesthetically pleasing, this plant is a great option for those looking for something that resembles bamboo. As well as their rich green leaves, Parlour Palms yield clusters of pretty yellow-hued blooms in the spring (providing they are in the right environment). Following on from these blooms, you will notice a scattering of dark, blackberries.
To ensure your Parlour Palm stays in tip-top condition, place it in a pot containing well-draining soil, and only water when this is dry to the touch. Try to place it in an environment that boasts above-average humidity levels, with indoor temperatures of between 18°C (65°F) and 26°C (80°F), and add fertiliser every three to four weeks.
It is important to choose a position in your home that is privy to bright, indirect light, as too much direct sunlight can have a detrimental impact on your palm plant.
A perfect option for novice gardeners: If you wish to add an injection of greenery to your home or office, this is the perfect plant for you and one that is extremely easy to care for. When you provide them with the correct care and growing environment, these non-fussy plants will thrive, even when cared for by the novice gardener.
How to plant
When grown in an outdoor environment, a Parlour Palm can reach an impressive height of eight feet tall. However, when grown inside, it tends to reach a final height of around four feet. It is a good idea to keep these measurements in mind when choosing a home for your Parlour Palm.
Unlike other plants, these palms boast a slower growth rate, which means you don’t need to worry too much about them outgrowing their pots. For the best growth rates, opt for a rich potting soil with medium drainage abilities. Any soils that are too heavy have the tendency to hold too much water, which can cause root rot.
A peat-based potting mix is a great option, as is a traditional pre-mixed potting combination, especially one that boasts a slow-release fertiliser. Both are available online or from your local garden centre.
To ensure optimal growth, water your Parlour Palm every one to two weeks. It is imperative you allow the soil to dry between watering. Depending on where you place it, the time it takes to dry out fully will differ.
One of Parlour Palm’s great selling points is its ability to grow well in lower light conditions, including artificial lighting. However, if you can, place this palm in an area privy to bright, yet indirect light.
As soon as the weather warms up, you can place your palm outdoors in the spring in a shaded spot away from bright light, as this can cause the leaves to become scorched. Just be sure to bring the plant back inside as soon as the temperatures drop.