How to Propagate Fishtail Palm | 3 Ways of Caryota mitis Propagation


Caryota mitis commonly called Fishtail Palm or Clustering Fishtail Palm is an easy to propagate spectacular palm which bears saw-edged leaves on arching fronds.

Fishtail Palm produces clustered stems which in the wild can grow to a height of 33 ft and 6 inch diameter but indoors it only grows to a height of about 6-8 ft only.

The palm bears purple flowers and the fruits are dark purple to red. It has the ability to grow with moderate sun exposure.

Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis) is native to Tropical Asia from India to Java to Southern China and naturalized in southern Florida and in parts of Africa and Latin America.

Fishtail palm, Caryota mitis

How to propagate Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis)

Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis) propagation can be done in 3 ways; from seeds, from offshoots or by plant division.

1.How to propagate Fishtail Palm from seeds

Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis) seed propagation; Seed germination is difficult and may take up to 4-6 months. It also requires that the soil be kept moist through out the period.

Fill the rooting container with free-draining potting mix and slightly moisten the soil.

Sow the Fishtail Palm seeds in the moist soil and cover the seeds slightly with soil. Do not bury them too deep to hasten germination.

Cover the set up with polythene cover to create a greenhouse effect and place in a shaded, warm place at about 300C. Warmth and humidity are important for germination.

Keep the soil moist through out the period until germination of the Fishtail Palm seeds takes place. Germination may take upto 4-6 weeks.

Lower the temperature slightly after germination and maintain the soil moist until the new Fishtail Palms are well established after which you can begin routine care.

Fishtail palm, Caryota mitis

2.How to propagate Fishtail Palm from offshoots

Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis) propagation from offshoots;

Water the Fishtail Palm thoroughly at least 1 day before to make it easier to seperate the offshoot and also hasten its establishment. A well hydrated plant suffers less shock and takes a shorter time to take root.

With a sharp sterilized knife or scissors, carefully seperate the Fishtail Palm offshoot from the mother plant. Ensure the offshoot has adequate roots before seperating it from the mother.

Select a 6 or 8 in. pot and ensure that the pot has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to rotting.

Fill the pot with free-draining potting mix and make a hole in the center of the pot. Ensure that the hole is slightly wider than the base of the Fishtail Palm offshoot.

Place the Fishtail Palm offshoot in the previously made hole and lightly firm the soil around the base while taking care not to bury it too deep; maintain the offshoot at the same soil level it was in the previous pot.

Water the soil thoroughly and place the set up in a well-lit, warm place. Maintain the soil moist until the new plant is well established after which you can begin routine care.

Fishtail palm, Caryota mitis

3.How to propagate Fishtail Palm by plant division

How to divide Fishtail Palm (Caryota mitis);

Water the Fishtail Palm thoroughly at least 1 day before to make it easier to divide and also hasten establishment. A well hydrated plant suffers less shock and takes a shorter time to take root.

Take out the Fishtail Palm from its pot and carefully divide it into sections by cutting through the rhizome with a sharp clean knife. Carefully pull apart the roots. Ensure each section has adequate roots to hasten establishment.

Select a 6 or 8 in. pot and ensure that the pot has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to rotting.

Fill the pot with free-draining potting mix and make a hole in the center of the pot. Ensure that the hole is slightly wider than the root base of the Fishtail Palm section.

Place the Fishtail Palm section in the previously made hole and lightly firm the soil around the base while taking care not to bury it too deep; maintain the section at the same soil level it was in the previous pot.

Water the soil thoroughly and place the set up in a well-lit, warm place. Maintain the soil moist until the new plant is well established after which you can begin routine care.

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