Plant Care, Tips

Areca Palm Care Tips

The Areca Palm is grown as an ornamental plant in gardens in tropical and subtropical regions, and elsewhere indoors as a houseplant and it’s highly rated for cleaning indoor air. Also known as the Butterfly Palm, because of its arching yellowish-green fronds, and the Party Palm, because it’s widely rented for weddings and parties.

Common Name:Areca Palm, Butterfly Palm, Golden Cane Palm, or Yellow Palm
Botanical Name:Dypsis Lutescens
Native To:Madagascar and South India
Care Taking:Easy
Sunlight:Partial Shade
Placement:Indoor, Outdoor, Living Room
Soil:Rich and Moist
Watering:Twice a week


Anytime during the year, it is important to mist water on the leaves regularly. This recreates its natural environment living conditions which are rather moist.

Spring and summer is the time of the year when areca grow most. Water regularly while letting the soil mix dry in the surface before watering again. Watering must be regular but limited, in order to not suffocate the plant’s roots. You might say that watering twice a week is often needed.

In fall and winter, start reducing the watering because areca water needs begin to decrease. Only when the soil is dry down to the first inch or so (a couple centimeters), water to moisten the entire soil mix again. Again, one might contend that watering once a week should largely suffice.


Fertilize the Areca Palm in spring and summer only, with a palm fertilizer or a standard houseplant fertilizer at half strength. Finding the right fertilizer for your plant may be a game of trial and error. The Areca Palm likes to feed heavily, needing magnesium and iron to prevent yellowing leaves. However, the plant is very sensitive to the salts found in fertilizers, which can make feeding the plant a tricky balancing act. Experiment with different fertilizer solutions until you feel the plant is responding well.


This plant has a high dependency on light and will need to be placed in a brightly lit spot in your home. Many owners struggle to find an area with the correct lighting, as the Areca Palm needs lots of bright light, but won’t be happy in indirect light, which will turn the leaves a yellowing color. A windowsill that receives lots of natural daylight will be the best place for the plant, and if necessary, filter direct sunlight with blinds or curtains.

Re Potting

This plant doesn’t need to be potted very frequently as it tends to fare better when it is pot-bound. It likes to be in quite a tight fitting pot for its roots, and this will also help to limit the size of the plant; however, it’s always a good idea to re-pot just to freshen up the soil that the plant is sitting in. You can re-pot this plant around once every three years, or more often if it looks like your Areca Palm is struggling as a result of being pot bound. Some people get away without ever re-potting their Areca Palm, as its lifespan is only around ten years.

For the new soil, use a palm specific potting soil, or a standard houseplant potting soil with a handful of river sand thrown in.

Common Issues

Yellowing Leaves
Yellow leaves are not normal for the Areca Palm, and usually indicate that the plant is not receiving enough water. Remedy this by giving your plant more frequent waterings, and the plant should recover very quickly.

Yellow Spots
If the leaves of your palm are turning yellow only in small spots, then this is likely caused by potassium levels of the soil being too low, or the acidity level of the soil may be too high. Adjust your fertilizer to try to balance out the levels, and if necessary, you could re-pot the plant to start with fresh soil.

Brown Tips
Brown tips are usually not a watering issue, but instead are caused by cold drafts, or the air being too dry. Use a process of elimination to figure out what is causing the tips of your plant to turn brown, and address this accordingly. You may want to move the plant to a more secluded spot away from cold drafts, or spray it with a misting water spray to increase humidity.

Root Rot or Pink Rot
These problems are serious, and are caused simply by overwatering. Root rot can quickly kill a plant or damage it to a point where it cannot be saved. Prevention is the best medicine for root rot, and can be achieved very simply by ensuring you have a good drainage system in place, and by being careful to not over water your Areca Palm.

Use a well-draining soil and ensure that your plant pot has holes at the bottom where unused water can drain away. The drip tray should be emptied on a regular basis so that the plant doesn’t have to sit in water. Always test the soil before adding more water, this will ensure that the plant does not become overwatered.

All you need to know about Areca Palm

Areca is a very elegant palm tree that adapts very well to indoor life in an apartment or house.

All in one aesthetic, resilient and very easy to grow, this is one of the most appreciated and often-purchased indoor plants.

Its foliage is quite elegant and brings a touch of exotic life to a living room, dining area, or any other room of the house that is well-lit.

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