How To Take Care Of Cat Palm Plant

Since cat palms are native to humid climates, plants thrive in soil that is consistently damp (not wet!) and require frequent watering. Cat palms should be watered with filtered water because they can be sensitive to the chlorine and minerals in tap water. Additionally, they gain from higher humidity, which can be achieved with a pebble tray or humidifier.

Bright, indirect light in large amounts is what cat palms prefer. Although they like some shade, they can survive full sun with proper watering.

Cat palms should be treated with an all-purpose liquid fertiliser once a month during the active growing season (spring and summer).

Cat palms only require repotting every three years or so, on average. Use potting soil that drains well, and use a pot with drainage holes.

As new growth appears, the lower leaves of the cat palm will naturally become yellow and brown. You can clip these leaves with a pair of tidy scissors or pruning shears. The beautiful yellow pendulous flowers of cat palms will also give rise to small, rounded fruits. The fruits will only be produced if you have both a male and a female plant, though, as cat palms are dioecious, which means that the male and female portions needed for pollination are on distinct plants.

How frequently should a cat palm be watered?

A bushy palm with airy, arching fronds is called a cat palm. This species, which is native to Mexico, can be cultivated outside in the understory of other plants, although it is most frequently grown inside as a low-maintenance houseplant. For a fashionable show, place them alongside houseplants with larger leaves.

Basic Care Summary

Cat palms require only minimal maintenance, and they thrive in light, well-drained soil. Consistently moisten the soil. When there is vigorous growth, use a balanced liquid fertiliser every month.

Planting Instructions

Start by using a high-quality, commercial potting soil when planting Cat Palms indoors. These are typically cleaner, pest-free, and lighter in weight than topsoil. Many come with a mild starter fertiliser already mixed in.

Choose a container with a drainage hole or be ready to drill one if there isn’t one already.

Fill the planter with potting soil until it is 2 (5 cm) from the rim to prepare it. Take the plant out of the pot.

Either by hand or with a trowel, make a tiny hole in the ground somewhat bigger than the root ball. Place the plant in the hole and firmly pack earth around the roots, leaving the root ball exposed. When all the plants are in their pots, give them a good start by giving the soil a good soak. Put the plant in a regular sunny spot.

Every two years, repot the plant in the same container or one that is just a little bit bigger than the roots’ diameter.

Watering Instructions

The soil should be wet but well-drained for cat palms. Use your finger to feel the soil’s moisture level. It’s time to water if the top 2-4 (5–10 cm) of the soil is dry or the plants are starting to wilt.

If at all feasible, apply water at the soil level to avoid wetting the palm foliage. Until water is dripping from the pot’s base, irrigate the entire soil surface. This suggests that the ground is very damp.

Fertilizing Instructions

There are many different types of fertilisers, including granulated, slow-release, liquid feeds, organic, and synthetic. Choose a product with a nutritional balance intended for foliage plants like Cat Palm and decide which application technique is most appropriate for the circumstance.

It’s crucial to follow the instructions on the fertiliser box to decide how much and how frequently to feed plants because too much fertiliser can harm plants.

For container plants, slow-release fertilisers are an excellent, hassle-free option. Frequently, plants can receive the ideal level of nourishment for the entire season with just one application.

Pruning Instructions

Most Cat Palm plants grown in containers can be freely clipped to keep the appropriate size and shape. Maintaining trim foliage also keeps plants appearing orderly, promotes the growth of more side shoots and blooms, and lessens the need for the plant to establish a deep root system. Given that the roots are in a small area, this is significant.

How are the palms of cats cared for?

Shortcuts for Cat Palm Care Never let the soil go completely dry; keep it just barely damp. It’s worse to give plants too much nourishment than not enough. High humidity is recommended since dry air can seriously harm a cat palm. A Cat Palm should not be placed next to heaters, air conditioners, or chilly draughts.


Although they can tolerate some direct sunlight and enjoy lots of bright light, cat palm trees are still rather vulnerable to burning. They should, if at all feasible, be situated close to windows that face east or south and receive lots of sunlight (in the Northern hemisphere).

You might try avoiding placing your kitty palm on the actual windowsill in order to prevent scorching the leaves. Place the plant 1 to 3 feet away instead. As an alternative, you might scatter the strongest rays using a thin curtain.


Because the ideal temperature range for cat palm trees is the same as that of a human, they thrive indoors. Anywhere between 10 and 27 C (50 and 80 F) will do for this tropical, but average room temperature works fine.

The plant really won’t survive being exposed to cold for long periods of time, so keep it away from sources of cold like single-paned windows and draughts.

Are cat palms healthy houseplants?

Is cat palm a healthy houseplant? The cat palm is a superb indoor houseplant, yes. It merely needs bright sunshine, a moderate to high humidity level, evenly moist soil, and sporadic feedings. It is a wonderful option for vast rooms because of its wide spread and six-foot height. It also works well as an air purifier.

Which advantages do cat palms have? These beautiful houseplants are harmless to cats and dogs, easy to cultivate (even for novices), adapt well to indoor settings, and purify the air. With the right care, they can live for many years. The best part is that they can provide a touch of the tropics to any room in your house, especially big, empty corners that get lots of sun.

Do I need to spray my kitty palm?

Cat palms don’t do well with extremes in watering, just like with light. Both dry and wet soil are intolerable to them. Either one can cause the leaves to change colour and eventually turn brown or yellow before they completely fall off. Keep the soil damp to the touch instead. Water should be added a little at a time until it barely begins to drip out of the drainage holes in the pot’s bottom.

Sand or small stones should be added to a shallow tray, saucer, or pan (for larger plants).

Can I trim my cat palm’s brown tips?

Remove all of the brown fronds off the plant and set it in direct, bright light. Since direct sunlight frequently causes indoor houseplants’ leaves to burn, the term “high light” only applies to intense indirect light. Too much heat and aridity promote Spider Mites and hasten the fading of blossoms.

Why is my cat’s palm fading away?

The Cat Palm (Chamaedorea cataractarum) is unquestionably the ideal plant to enhance your living space. But it can be frustrating if you notice brown tips on a cat palm.

Inadequate watering is the most likely cause of the brown tips on cat palms. The root of a cat palm begins to suffer when it is overwatered. Overfertilization, poor lighting, temperature stress, poor soil, pests, etc. are additional factors. Brown tips on Cat Palms can also be caused by improper planting depth.

I’ll go over each issue that typically arises when growing the Cat Palm as you read on. I’ll demonstrate how to make it look shiny once more.

Do palm trees require direct sun exposure?

The majority of palms can tolerate (or even prefer) shade, and they may not survive in excessive amounts of direct sunlight. Low-light palm species may survive lower light levels, particularly in the winter, but they prefer bright indirect light.

Is it okay to leave my cat outside?

Although cat palms are very easy to care for, you should still keep an eye out for pests like ants, mealy bugs, scale, and spider mites. When you first notice an infestation, it is important to take immediate action. Keep in mind to look underneath the leaves, where certain pests like to hide.

Use an all-purpose plant-insect repellant, which you may get at your neighbourhood garden centre, if you see an infestation. Considering that their leaves may be susceptible to fungus infestations like Leaf Spot, it is also crucial to monitor for infections.

This will manifest as a lesion that is 1/8 to 1/4 inches long and reddish to brown in hue. You can treat it by using a fungicide from your neighbourhood garden centre.

Cat Palms Frequently Asked Questions

These palms can survive outside, especially in patio planters. They can be brought indoors throughout the winter because they do best in warm, indirect light.

Remember to keep them out of direct sunlight and give them regular waterings to keep the soil moist, but avoid giving them too much water.

Insufficient watering of the plant might cause the leaves to become yellow. Remember to water the soil at least once each week to keep it moist but not soaked.

Your plant need more frequent watering if the top inch of soil is dry. Try using filtered water instead of hard (high mineral content) water since it won’t burn the leaves.

Because they are tropical plants, they require 4-6 hours of direct, bright light each day. Avoid placing it in direct sunlight since the leaves will be burned. If your plant isn’t receiving enough light, you can add a full-spectrum light nearby to help it out.

The Cat Palm (Chamaedorea cataractarum), according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, is not poisonous to cats and dogs.

Light Requirements

Bright, directional light is ideal for cat palm growth. This plant thrives in a room with a south or west facing window. Early in the morning, it can handle a little direct sun, but if you expose it to too much sunshine, the leaves will become scorched. To prevent exposure to direct sunlight, place it about 2 feet (60 cm) away from the window.

The minimum width of this palm’s growth is 3 feet (90 cm). To ensure that the leaves in the back get all the light they want, make sure to rotate it frequently.

The Cat Palm is a common selection for offices because it tolerates artificial light well. You can keep your Cat Palm in a dimly lit space that requires a splash of green by using artificial or grow lights.

Temperature Requirements

It is possible to cultivate cat palms in a typical residential environment. 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit is the perfect range (21 C27 C). It shouldn’t be subjected to continuous temperature changes because doing so can turn the leaves yellow. Never place your Cat Palm close to a radiator or heating vent or just underneath an air conditioner.

Water Requirements

The Cat Palm appreciates routine irrigation and soil that is maintained damp but not wet. When you feel dry soil in the top inch of the soil with your finger, water the plant thoroughly. Avoid letting water sit in the container tray and water the soil evenly so that all of the roots are moistened.

The Cat Palm is not drought-tolerant, but it can also become stressed from excessive irrigation. Air circulation around the roots and nutrient absorption may be hampered by wet soil. Additionally, it can turn into a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi, which can lead to catastrophic issues for the palm including root rot.

It’s crucial to keep in mind the season, the temperature of the room, and the container size when watering your Cat Palm.

Keep the following in mind:

  • In the spring and summer, plants require more water, but in the winter, you should water your plants less frequently.
  • The palm will require more frequent watering if the environment is extremely hot and dry.
  • Avoid giving plants, whether they are young or established and mature, the same amount of water or on the same schedule.

When in doubt, test the soil with your finger or even a digital moisture metre.

Humidity Requirements

Tropical plants like cat palms require humidity levels of at least 50% to grow. You will probably need to increase the humidity around your hand because this is a little higher than the typical value in most households.

Here are some techniques you can use:

  • Use a humidifier: This is the only foolproof way to increase humidity, and although it can be pricy, it’s an investment that will benefit your Cat Palm.
  • Use a pebble tray: It’s easy and effective to boost the humidity surrounding your palm by simply setting your plant pot on top of a tray filled with pebbles and some water.
  • Keep your palm in the restroom; the cat palm thrives best in the moistest atmosphere in your home. Just make sure there is a window in the bathroom so the plant has enough light.
  • Misting can be used to increase the humidity around the palm, but for any observable, long-lasting effect, you must mist it at least once each day.

Fertilizer Requirements

The Cat Palm doesn’t consume a lot of food. You can spread a diluted nitrogen-rich fertiliser once each month to encourage lush, wholesome vegetation. Feed your Cat Palm all spring and summer long; but, as the plant’s growth slows down in the winter, you should reduce fertiliser use then.

When feeding your palm, make sure the soil is always moist because putting fertiliser to dry soil will burn the roots.

When salts from fertilisers accumulate in the soil, cat palm can become sensitive. Therefore, flushing the soil once or twice a year, during the plant’s growing season, is advised. Put the pot in a deep sink or bathtub, and pour water slowly into the soil for a few minutes to do this. Place the pot back on its container tray after allowing it to drain.

Soil Requirements

The ideal soil for Cat Palm should be free-draining, aerated, and loose. Clay soils are difficult for palm palms to flourish on and they prefer permeable, sandy soils. A heavy, compacted potting material will obstruct adequate water movement, suffocate the roots, and promote fungal issues in the Cat Palm plant.

You might try producing your own palm tree potting mix, which is something that many gardening stores sell.

Here are some combinations you could try:

  • 3 parts soil mix for African violets and 1 part garden loam;
  • one part perlite, one part cactus soil, and one part potting soil;
  • Sand, pine bark, and peat are all equal parts.

Repotting Your Cat Palm

The Cat Palm is a type of indoor palm tree that also grows very slowly. You should only have to repot it once every three years on average. This palm appreciates a snug fitting enclosure.

Upgrade it to a new pot only when the roots are visible through the drainage hole or when it is obviously having trouble.

When Is the Best Time to Repot?

Repotting the Cat Palm plant is best done in the spring or summer. The palm is in the middle of its growing season at this time, so the roots have a better chance of recovering from being disturbed.

What Is the Best Container?

Choose a new container that is only 2 inches (5 cm) wider or 1 size larger than the old one. The pot can be made of any material, including plastic, ceramic, or terracotta. The only thing to double-check is that the bottom of the new container has drainage holes, which will stop the Cat Palm roots from getting soggy.

How to Repot Cat Palm

Prior to repotting, give your palm one or two days of watering. By doing this, you can work with the soil more easily and avoid transplant shock. Cat The stress of repotting will be lessened by the moisture in the soil because palm roots are extremely fragile and dislike being disturbed.

Our detailed instructions for repotting the Cat Palm are as follows:

  • Remove the plant from the pot slowly. To avoid ripping them, gently push any roots that are poking out of the drainage holes back inside with your fingers.
  • Don’t shake the plant or attempt to disentangle the root ball; instead, gently remove part of the old soil. The plant might easily suffer a root break because the roots are so delicate.
  • The root ball should be positioned on top of some potting soil in the container. Any openings at the top and on the sides should be filled in. Avoid overworking the soil since it might compress and choke the roots.
  • Water the plant thoroughly and keep an eye on it for a few days to make sure it doesn’t begin to droop or display symptoms of transplant shock.

Pruning and Maintenance

The Cat Palm just requires light pruning. Some of the bottom leaves that are brown or dried out may need to be removed as the plant grows. There is no need to remove any green leaves from Cat Palms to give them a broader shape because they naturally grow in a bushy manner.

To get rid of any dead leaves, use a sharp knife or pruning shears. In order to keep your other plants from contracting pests or illnesses, be careful to sanitise your instruments after each usage. To get rid of any infections, just wash the blade and then wipe it with alcohol.