Bamboo Palms common problems indoors are brought about by cultural faults in watering, humidity, feeding and temperature among others. These palms do not have many issues if the right indoor growing conditions are provided.
The best growing conditions for Bamboo Palms are partial shade (bright, indirect light), moderately moist soil, moderate warmth, average room humidity and free-draining soil that is rich in organic matter.
Bamboo Palms also called cane palms produce tall reed-like stems which look like bamboo-like canes when mature. They are slow growing and can reach a height of 6-10 ft under good conditions.
Once mature they produce flowers followed by bright-orange fruits. The fruits contain oxalic acid which is toxic to humans and pets and can irritate the skin. Always wear gloves when handling these fruits.
Bamboo Palms belong to the Chamaedorea genus and are native to the subtropical and tropical forests of America where they grow as understory plants.
Bamboo Palms do not have very many issues when grown indoors. The common problems include brown leaf tips, yellow leaves, brown leaves, leaf spots, pests and root-rot disease among others. Read on for more on these problems, their remedies and solutions.
There are two possible reasons for Bamboo Palm dying. One possible reason is root-rot disease brought about by soggy soil.
Take the palm out of its pot and inspect the roots. If the roots are brown and mushy, root-rot is the cause. Cut the brown-black roots and treat the healthy roots with a fungicidal solution.
Repot the palm in fresh soil and keep it dry for some time before resuming watering. Read more on how to treat root-rot disease in houseplants.
Make sure that the pot has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to prevent the soil from getting soggy. Also, reduce watering in the cold season as growth is minimal at this time.
The second reason for Bamboo Palm dying is accumulation of salts in the soil. Salts may come from the water used for watering or from the fertilizers used to feed the palm.
To get rid of these accumulated salts from the soil, regularly flush them out by running a stream of water through the soil until it comes out through the drainage holes. Let the stream or water run for several minutes and repeat the process several times.
Bamboo Palm brown leaf tips are caused by four possible reasons. Trim off the brown tips with sterilized scissors.
One reason for brown leaf tips in Bamboo Palm is dry air. To increase humidity, set the pot on a wet pebble tray . Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.
The second reason for brown leaf tips in Bamboo Palm is underwatering. Keep the soil moderately moist at all times during the growing season.
Cut down on watering in the cold season but do not allow the soil to dry out completely.
The third reason for brown leaf tips in Bamboo Palm is cold draughts. Protect it from cold draughts or keep it away from draughts inorder to maintain an average warmth with a minimum of 120C.
The fourth reason for brown leaf tips in Bamboo Palm is damage by touching. Keep the palm away from the line of traffic.
Bamboo Palm yellowing leaves are due to incorrect watering; either underwatering or overwatering (soggy soil).
Underwatering implies that there is too little moisture in the soil. Therefore, there isn't enough water for the palm to take up and transport nutrients needed for food making.
Inorder to save the available feed the the leaves begin to die where they turn yellow, then brown and eventually they fall (drop).
Overwatering (soggy soil) means that there is too much moisture in the soil and very little air. This causes the roots to die and thus cannot take up nutrients to the upper parts of the plant.
The leaves being the furthest from the soil are the first casualty, they turn yellow, brown and die.
Bamboo Palm requires moderately moist soil to thrive. Water it thoroughly and keep the soil moderately moist at all times during the growing season.
Decrease watering during the cold season to keep the soil slightly moist but do not let the soil dry out completely.
Also, ensure that the pot has a drainage hole and that the soil is free-draining to prevent the soil from getting soggy.
Brown leaf spots in Bamboo Palm may be due to two reasons. Cut away the affected parts and discard. One reason for brown leaf spots is overwatering.
Keep the soil moderately moist at all times during the growing season. Reduce watering in the cold season but do not allow the soil to dry out completely.
The second reason for brown leaf spots in Bamboo Palm is sudden decrease in temperature due to cold draughts.
Protect Bamboo Palm from cold draughts or keep it away from draughts inorder to maintain an average warmth with a minimum of 120C.
The lower leaves in Bamboo Palm may turn brown and droop due to age. Remove the brown leaves by cutting with a sharp knife and not pulling to avoid excessive injury as it can lead to fungal diseases infestation.
However, if browning of leaves in Bamboo Palm is general and accompanied by rotting, the reason is root-rot disease due to soggy soil.
Take out the palm from its pot and inspect the roots. Brown mushy roots indicate root-rot. Cut the brown-black roots and treat the healthy roots with a fungicidal solution.
Repot the palm in fresh soil and keep the palm dry for some time before resuming watering. Read more on how to treat root-rot disease.
Always ensure that the pot for your Bamboo Palm has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to prevent the soil from getting soggy.
Also, reduce watering in the cold season as growth is minimal at this time therefore, the palm does not need much water.
Common pests in Bamboo Palm are red spider mites, scale insects and mealy bugs. Regularly check underneath the leaves for these pests.
Isolate the affected palm to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it appropriately for these pests. Read on how to identify and get rid of pests in houseplants.
The foliage of Bamboo Palm is non-toxic to both humans and pets as indicated by ASPCA. However, the fruits (berries) are highly poisonous to both humans and pets.
It is important to prevent flowering by removing the flower stalks when they begin to form. The fruits contain oxalic acid which can irritate sensitive skin; always wear gloves when handling.
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