Caring for mountain palms — this is how it works!

Mountain palms are popular houseplants with pinnate leaves and bushy growth. Over 100 different species are known worldwide. Chamaedorea elegans is most commonly cultivated as a green plant. With little care, the palm trees quickly bring tropical flair to your home, office or business premises. In addition to the attractive shape, the mountain palm also has a beneficial effect on the indoor climate. The houseplant filters pollutants from the air and is therefore particularly useful in residential and business premises.

Worth knowing Site care Watering Fertilizing Repotting Pests & diseases FAQ

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Worth knowing about the mountain palm

Botanical name: Chamaedorea elegans
Other names: Mexican mountain palm, dainty mountain palm
Use: indoor plant, indoor greening, tub plant from May to September, air freshener, office plant, also suitable for hydroponics
Origin: Central America
Special features: Chamaedorea form an upright trunk with several shoots. Already after 2 or 3 years yellow flowers appear. The species is hardy and easy to care for

In which location does the mountain palm feel most comfortable?

Chamaedorea prefer a semi-shady to shady place in the house, because they should never be exposed to direct sunlight. The lighting requirements are in line with its homeland, where it grows as an undergrowth plant. If the sun is too strong, burns or lightening of the leaves can occur. From the end of May to August, the Chamaedorea can be outdoors. Here, too, a bright location in the shade is ideal. Ensure gradual acclimatization to outdoor conditions. The risk of burns is very high without acclimatization. Temperatures between 15 and 22 degrees Celsius are ideal all year round, and the plant should also grow in winternever below 10 degrees Celsius.

How do I properly care for my Chamaedorea?

Chamaedorea elegans are very robust and require little maintenance. Needs-based watering and regular fertilization are essential for growth and vitality. Occasional spraying with low-lime water helps especially with dry heating air in winter. You can also easily increase the humidity with an indoor fountain nearby. Fronds turn brown over time, this natural process is not a problem. So trim regularly

Our gardening tip: Rinse small plants regularly in the shower with lukewarm water. This removes the dust and promotes vitality. If the plants are too large and unwieldy for this, wiping the leaves with a damp cloth will help.

How do I water my mountain palm correctly?

Chamaedorea require even soil moisture. Unlike other palms, this variety tolerates a little more water and the roots tolerate moisture. However, there should never be standing water for a long time. You can dive smaller specimens once a week. To do this, place the entire pot in a bucket filled with water and submerge the plant until no more air bubbles rise. The advantage of the immersion method is that the root ball is completely soaked. After 15 minutes, pour off the excess water. Water larger specimens once or twice a week, depending on the temperature, volume of soil and insolation. Again, there should never be water in the saucer or planter. It is important that the substrate dries a little between the individual watering processes.

Our gardening tip: Unsightly stains form when the leaves are sprayed with hard water. It is therefore advisable to only spray with stagnant water.

How do I fertilize my Chamaedorea properly?

For good development and growth, constant fertilizer is necessary for the mountain palm. A special green plant and palm fertilizer that contains important growth and vital substances is best suited for fertilization. Fertilize the palm weekly from March to October. Dose the liquid fertilizer according to the instructions on the package and give the Chamaedorea the necessary nutrients when watering. When there is a lack of fertilizer, the leaf is light -colored, forms fewer fronds and is more susceptible to pests. Fertilizing once a month is sufficient in winter. It is important that you only fertilize when the soil is moist to avoid damage to the roots.

Our gardening tip: Fertilizing with fertilizer sticks is a very practical way of supplying the houseplant with nutrients. Especially for small plants, fertilizer sticks are a convenient long-term fertilization that works for 3 months.

How do I repot my mountain palm?

For healthy growth, you should transplant your Chamaedorea elegans into a larger pot with fresh substrate at regular intervals. Spring is ideal for this. Young plants can stay in the same pot for a year or two immediately after purchase.

3 tips for repotting:

  • Choose a vessel that is 5 to 7 cm larger in diameter and has a drainage hole.
  • Use only green plant and palm soil. This substrate is specially designed for palm trees, is peat-reduced and has a pH of 5.3.
  • Place a drainage layer of clay granules on the bottom of the pot. This will prevent damage to the roots.

Repotting plants — our tips

Find out in the blog post why and how you should repot your plants.

repot plants

What pests and diseases can the mountain palm get?

Chamaedorea elegans are easy-care houseplants that are rarely affected by disease. The following pests can occur:

Spider Mites (Red Spider)

The affected leaves have silvery dots on the upper side and webs are visible on the underside of the leaves. It is usually sufficient to rinse the plants with warm water and treat them with a plant strengthener. These bio-active agents contain natural plant extracts that contribute to the vitalization of the plant. Make sure the humidity is high after the treatment.

scale insects

There are brown, slightly convex knobs in the leaf axils in particular. The scale insects are safely hidden under these protective shields and are therefore difficult to combat. As soon as you discover the infestation, you should wipe off the scale insects or prune the plant. The pests can be controlled biologically with oil-based agents. It is important that the application is carried out several times.

Indoor plant pests our tips

Find out in the blog post which pests there are and how you can prevent and treat them.

Houseplant Pests

Are you looking for more information about pests and diseases or do you have questions about a plant problem? Our plant doctors will be happy to help you – in person and online!

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FAQ — Frequently asked questions about mountain palms

What can be the reason for brown leaf tips?

Brown leaf tips are often a result of low humidity or direct sunlight. Make sure the location is not directly next to a heater or stove. Regular spraying with low-lime water can help to prevent brown leaf tips. You can also rinse off small palm trees in the shower once a week.

How are Chamaedorea propagated?

The easiest way is to propagate in sections. Older plants form side shoots near the ground. These shoots can be cut off with a sharp knife and planted in growing substrate for further cultivation. It is ideal if you propagate the palm trees in late spring or summer. Propagation by seeds is also possible. This method requires some patience. It can easily take up to 12 months before you have young mountain palms.

Is hydroponics possible?

Indoor palms are best kept in hydroponics.

Does the flower have to be cut off?

The green plants bloom easily. The formation of flowers costs the plant strength and it is advisable to remove the flower stalk immediately after it has faded.

Do the palms seed after flowering?

Chamaedorea are so-called bisexual plants, which means that there are male and female plants. Usually there are several plants in the pots and thus the pollen transfer can take place. The seed develops from the female flowers. If there is only one plant in the pot, no seeds will form after flowering.

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