Thursday, August 15, 2013

Watering Your Tropical Houseplants

The amount and interval of watering for each plant is different and depends on a variety of factors. These include the type of plant, the grow pot size, the light intensity, the time of year, the amount of foliage, the growing medium, the micro environment and the overall health of the plant. For instance, a plant set next to an air vent is going to require more frequent watering than one that is not. Plants that have been moved to a new environment often use more water as they acclimate to new conditions. A plant with an abundance of foliage is going to require much more moisture than a very sparse plant. If your plant is in a plastic container, it will stay moist much longer than a plant in a clay or wood container. The clay and wood are porous and allow for good air circulation and therefore the soil will dry more quickly. All of these things should be considered as you make the decision on whether to water or not. To read more about indoor tropical plants and watering properly....Click here

Monday, August 12, 2013

Rhapis Excelsa Palms in Florida

I recently received this comment/question from a reader. I have an email form for questions and comments, but often there is no return email address so I will post them here with my best answer and others may have additional information to add. Thanks Florida reader, I hope this helps!

Palm Rhapis excelsa


 Four months ago, I relocated within Central Florida. I uprooted some of my 10'-12' tall Rhapis excelsa palms to take with me & potted them in 24" wide pots, using Miracle Gro's Moisture Control Potting Soil. I planted 12 plants, at a rate of 4 per pot. Unfortunately, they didn't do well during the move & only 4(in 1 pot) seem to have survived. The others wilted & seem to be rotting from the top down, though 5'-7' of each trunk from the ground up are still green. I cut off the dead fronds and there's been no new growth from the tips, which are now rotted. What can I do to try to save them? Please, advise? Thanks!


I have had Rhapis palms that were in similar condition that I was able to regrow into healthy, vigorous plants but since I don't know much about how you plan to use the palms, what kind of light they are in, etc. I can only give a general answer to this. If the roots of your palms are still somewhat healthy, you should cut any stalks that have started to die back off just above soil level. This will help the plant direct energy to growing new healthy stalks. Given some time, the plant should put out many new shoots and, if you give it proper light and watering, it should be a nice full plant, if somewhat shorter than you started with, in no time at all. Read more about Rhapis palm care....