Areca palm: Houseplant of the Month for February
Areca palm’s full, rich fronds create a soft green buffer against the outside world.
Soft domestic companion
One glance at Areca palm shows that it obviously comes from the tropics. A crown of fabulous fanned palm leaves emerges from a number of closely-packed small stems. The plant’s fountain shape gives it a lively look, and the leaves’ delicate fringe diffuses the light around the plant. That means that Areca palm has a very calm personality that can make an entire room friendlier. And everyone can do with more softness in their lives.
Admit it: sometimes it all gets a bit too much, in terms of timelines, the need to perform and having to be ‘switched on’ all the time. More and more people are longing to go offline for a while every so often. There’s no better place for that than home. With houseplants like Areca palm you can easily create a buffer zone against all those external stimuli. Even the shape suggests that this plant can embrace and nurture you so that you can recover, recharge and face the world again.
The Romans considered palm leaves to be the symbol of Nike, the goddess of victory. In this case you can view it as a victory over everything and everyone that is making demands of you, by choosing to put yourself first for once.
Soft and pure
Areca palm scores very well on the list of plants with air-purifying properties produced by NASA research. The plant reduces harmful substances and increases the amount of oxygen in the room. Is often considered the best air-purifying plant around – another reason to place one (or more) in your home.
Areca palm (also known as the butterfly palm) is a member of the Palm family and particularly grows in the rainforests of South-east Asia, from Malaysia to the Solomon Islands, where the climate has a high level of humidity. There are some 50 species, of which Areca palm is the most popular houseplant. The plant is also known as the golden cane palm because of the stems, which have a hint of golden yellow.
How to keep it happy!
- Areca palm likes a light spot, but does not want to be in full sun all day. In winter the plant wants as much light as possible.
- The soil can be slightly damp at all times. Water once a week in winter and twice a week in summer.
- Avoid overwatering and drain any excess water in the pot; the roots can’t cope with it.
- Areca palm loves being misted with a plant spray, particularly in winter when it’s often a bit dry indoors because of the central heating.
Powder pastels, tulle, lightbulbs that give out muted light and in-between curtains reinforce Areca palm’s softening buffer look; the aim is to make it look like you’ve placed a filter on your interior. Position a couple of bright healing crystals as a subtle contrast in all that tranquillity. The sense of an oasis is reinforced by placing Areca palm in a neutral pot made of matt glass, matt ceramic or smooth polished wood, for instance. The more serene the look, the more calming the room will become.
“I suddenly realized I was in California. Warm, palmy air – air you can kiss – and palms.” Jack Kerouac – On the Road
For more information see: www.Thejoyofplants.co.uk
Published on: 30 January 2020