How to Care for a Ponytail Palm – Ultimate Guide

Learn all how to care for a ponytail palm in this article. Its scientific name is (Beaucarnea recurvata). In this article we will teach you all about this beautiful plant.

Ponytail Palm Watering

How Often To Water The Ponytail Palm

In spring and summer, watering should be frequent. At least once a week, multiplying by two if temperatures are very high. Wait for the soil to dry out between watering, but control the timing: a lack or excess of water will cause you to find brown leaves on the elephant foot plant, which will have a dry appearance if the problem is a lack of water or a soft and drooping appearance if the problem is over-watering. In winter and autumn, if you have the plant outside and it usually rains in your area, do not water it and if it hardly rains in your area or it is indoors, water it every two or three weeks. Watering: little, especially when the trunk is already woody; when young the trunk is succulent and needs more water.

Excessive watering can easily kill the plant.

The frequency of watering should be 15 days in spring and summer (the substrate should be dry between watering and watering).

In winter should be watered once a month, depending on the climate where the plant is developing, in some cases should not be watered throughout the winter.

ponytail palm leaves

How to Fertilize the Ponytail Palm Plant

The Ponytail Palm Plant is a slow-growing plant and needs little fertilizer. In the months of high temperatures, fertilize monthly with natural or organic fertilizer.

What is the Best Temperature for the Ponytail Palm Plant

The Ponytail Palm Plant likes heat and light. It does not resist the cold. In winter, if it is frosty weather, put it at home, in a room with little heating and good light. It can withstand heating well if it is sprayed.

In summertime the plant should be sprayed with water so that it has humidity, otherwise, the tips of its leaves dry out. It has to spend the winter in a cool place (minimum 41 °F (5ºC) and with little watering.

Temperature: The Ponytail Palm should be in environments above 50 °F (10 ºC), as it does not tolerate cold well.

Light: The Ponytail Palm appreciates exposure to sunlight, but it does not like a direct sun for many hours at a time. Thus, it also tolerates in places where it does not have direct contact with the sun or if it is in semi-shade in very hot places.

Soil for Ponytail Palm

The substrate for the Ponytail Palm Plant should be light and well-drained to avoid waterlogging.

The best choice is a commercial mix for succulent and cacti plants. The young specimens need nutritious soil and more frequent watering in summer, but not the adults that already have a woody stem.

It is advisable a change of pot when the plant is acquired; later they should not be frequent. A small container because curiously the development of the plant seems to be better if the roots are crowded.

It is planted resistant to insect attacks, it can be attacked by spider mites and mealybugs.

ponytail palm in the garden

Ponytail Palm Pruning

The Ponytail Palm Plant does not require special pruning. Just remove those leaves that are drying or spoiling, with brown tips.

How to Propagate the Ponytail Palm

The Ponytail Palm can be easily propagated by cuttings. Separation of scions should be placed during spring. Propagation by seeds in a warm bed, but is difficult and time-consuming.

How to Care for a Ponytail Palm

Pests and diseases can appear in the Ponytail Palm at any time. Therefore, it is important you know to care for the Ponytail Palm and the remedies for each situation, Diseases in the Ponytail Palm could cause by fungi, aphids, mealybugs, or other problems.

Focusing on diseases that usually appear in this plant, we can indicate that the appearance of fungi in the Ponytail Palm usually corresponds to an excess of watering that causes rotting of the roots, which gradually spreads to the rest of the plant and is usually caused by the fungus Phytophthora. To remedy this problem, use a specific fungicide for plants by applying it to the roots. In this way, you will prevent the fungus from growing and eliminate it. You can buy one, but here we tell you all about how to make a homemade fungicide for plants.

Learn more about Ponytail Palm Brown Tips.

About Julia Morgan

We are the Morgan family, Henry, and Julia, both agronomists from the University of Michigan, where we met. We are experts in putting our hands in the soil and developing organic foods and improving production processes for decades. Likewise, we have worked for companies such as Mondelez International, BASF, Monsanto, etc. currently in our role as science writers for as well as advisors in promoting large scale food growing in urbanized areas. In this website, we share what we are most passionate about, gardening and farming. Enjoy and see real photos on our website. We hope that all our advice will be useful to you and that you will become an expert gardener.