How to Grow Parlor PalmHow to Grow Parlor Palm

The parlor palm, scientifically known as Chamaedorea elegans, is a popular tropical plant that is well-loved for its elegant, feather-like leaves and its ability to thrive indoors.

Whether you’re a seasoned plant parent or a beginner looking to add some greenery to your space, the parlor palm is an excellent choice.

In this article, we will guide you through the process of growing and caring for your parlor palm, from selecting the right location to providing the perfect amount of water and light.

Everything You Need to Know Parlor Palm

The Parlor Palm, scientifically known as Chamaedorea elegans, is a popular indoor plant valued for its elegant appearance and adaptability. Here’s a brief overview:

Taxonomic RankClassification
Division (or Phylum)Angiosperms (Flowering Plants)
OrderArecales (Palms)
FamilyArecaceae (Palm Family)
SpeciesC. elegans
How to Grow Parlor Palm

Key Features:

  • Appearance: Parlor Palms have feathery, arching, green fronds that give them a graceful, tropical appearance.
  • Size: They are relatively small, growing up to 3 to 6 feet in height indoors.
  • Adaptability: Well-suited for indoor environments, they tolerate low light conditions and are considered one of the most adaptable houseplants.
  • Care: They prefer indirect light, well-draining soil, and regular watering. They are known to be relatively low-maintenance.

Common Uses:

  • Parlor Palms are popular as ornamental houseplants and are often used in interior landscaping.
  • They contribute to indoor air purification, making them a favorite choice for homes and offices.

Choosing the Perfect Spot

Before bringing a parlor palm home, it’s essential to find the ideal spot for it to thrive. Parlor palms prefer bright indirect light, so it’s best to place them near a north or east-facing window where they can receive ample sunlight without being exposed to direct rays.

However, if you don’t have access to a sunlit area, don’t worry! Parlor palms can also tolerate low-light conditions.

It’s important to note that exposure to direct sunlight can cause the leaves of the parlor palm to become scorched and yellow. So, finding the right balance is crucial.

If you notice that your plant’s leaves are turning yellow or brown, it may be an indication that it’s receiving too much light.

Understanding Watering Needs

Like many tropical plants, parlor palms enjoy consistently moist but not soggy soil. When watering your parlor palm, it’s essential to avoid both overwatering and allowing the soil to completely dry out.

One way to ensure you’re providing the right amount of water is to check the moisture level in the soil regularly.

Stick your finger about an inch deep into the soil. If it feels dry at that depth, it’s time to water your plant. On average, watering once a week should be sufficient.

However, factors such as temperature and humidity levels may influence the frequency.

It’s worth noting that parlor palms are sensitive to fluoride and other chemicals often found in tap water. To prevent any potential damage, consider using filtered or distilled water for your plant.

Additionally, using a container with drainage holes is crucial to prevent waterlogged soil and root rot.

Maintaining Optimal Humidity

As native rainforest dwellers, parlor palms naturally thrive in humid environments. To create a suitable growing condition, it’s important to maintain a level of humidity that mimics their natural habitat.

If you live in an arid climate or find that the air in your home is too dry, you can increase the humidity around your parlor palm by using a humidifier or placing a tray filled with water near the plant.

Misting the leaves with water a couple of times a week is another effective method to elevate humidity levels.

How to Grow Parlor Palm

Fertilizing for Healthy Growth

To ensure your parlor palm remains healthy and green, it’s important to provide it with the necessary nutrients.

Applying a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing season (spring and summer) will help promote lush foliage and overall growth.

Remember, moderation is key when it comes to fertilizing. Applying too much fertilizer can lead to salt build-up in the soil, causing damage to the roots.

Always follow the instructions on the fertilizer packaging and dilute it to half or quarter strength to prevent overfertilization.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

While parlor palms are relatively hardy plants, they can still encounter a few problems along the way. Here are some common issues and how to address them:

Yellow Leaves:

If you notice yellow leaves on your parlor palm, it may be a sign of overwatering, underwatering, or exposure to direct sunlight.

Adjust your watering schedule accordingly, ensure the pot has good drainage, and move the plant to a more suitable location.

Brown Tips:

Brown tips on the leaves can be a result of low humidity or excessive fertilizer. Increase the humidity around your plant and reduce the frequency or strength of fertilization to address this issue.


Parlor palms are occasionally susceptible to pests such as spider mites and mealybugs. Regularly inspect the leaves for any signs of infestation, such as webbing or cotton-like clusters, and treat the affected areas with an organic insecticidal soap or neem oil. Additionally, maintaining good airflow around the plant can help prevent pest infestations.

Pruning and Propagation

Pruning is not often necessary for parlor palms unless you want to remove any yellow or brown leaves to maintain the plant’s aesthetic appeal. When pruning, use clean, sharp pruning shears and make clean cuts just above the base of the leaf stem.

If you wish to propagate your parlor palm, it can be done through division. Carefully remove the plant from its pot, separate the root ball into smaller sections, ensuring each section has healthy roots and foliage.

Plant the divided sections into separate pots with fresh potting soil and provide them with the same care as the mature plant.

The Benefits of Having a Parlor Palm

Apart from their aesthetic appeal, parlor palms offer several benefits to your indoor space. They have been found to help purify the air by removing toxins such as formaldehyde, benzene, and carbon monoxide.

Additionally, having plants indoors can improve mood, reduce stress levels, and boost productivity.

By adding a parlor palm to your home or workspace, not only are you enhancing the ambiance, but you’re also reaping the health benefits of having a touch of nature around you.

How to Grow Parlor Palm
How to Grow Parlor Palm


Growing and caring for a parlor palm can be a rewarding experience, even for those new to houseplants. By providing the right amount of light, water, humidity, and nutrients, you can enjoy the lush, green foliage of this tropical beauty.

Remember to pay attention to your plant’s needs, address any issues promptly, and enjoy the countless benefits it brings to your space. So go ahead, bring home a parlor palm, and watch it thrive in your care!


  1. Does Parlor Palm Need Sunlight?
    • Parlor Palms prefer bright, indirect light but can tolerate lower light conditions.
  2. Are Parlor Palms Good Indoor Plants?
    • Yes, Parlor Palms are excellent indoor plants, known for their adaptability to indoor environments.
  3. What Are the Benefits of Parlour Palm?
    • Parlour Palms are effective air purifiers, removing indoor pollutants. They also add a touch of greenery to indoor spaces.
  4. Is Parlour Palm Toxic to Cats?
    • Parlor Palms are non-toxic to cats, making them a safe choice for households with pets.

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