Neanthe Bella Palm Care

Placement

PRO TIP: These palms are often susceptible to spider mites, but a humid environment and frequent misting helps keep pests away.

Native to the rainforests of Southern Mexico and Guatemala, the Neanthe Bella Palm (Chamaedorea elegans) or Parlor Palm is known for its air purifying properties and ability to adapt to lower light conditions.

Direct sunlight can scorch the leaves of the Neanthe Bella Palm, so place this little beauty in a spot out of direct light. While it is tolerant of lower light conditions, you may notice leggy growth as a result, so a spot where it will receive bright indirect light a few feet removed from a southern, western, or eastern facing window is ideal. If your window faces north, place the plant directly in the window.

If you are unsure of the lighting conditions in your home or office, we have a guide for how to measure light in your space.

Neanthe Bella Close Up

These diminuitive palms only grow to a few feet tall at their largest, so you never have to worry about them outgrowing your space!

Routine Maintenance

PRO TIP: Neanthe Bella Palms are happy to grow with crowded roots, so there's never a rush to repot them. However, the larger the palm gets, the quicker its soil will dry, so regularly review your watering schedule as it grows.

Always be sure to assess your plant’s watering needs upon receiving it. Before giving your plant a drink, it is best to check the moisture level in the soil first to ensure it isn’t moist right beneath the surface. Also, consider aerating the soil of your plant before the initial watering. We compact the soil to avoid shifting during transit, so aerating can help the soil breathe and allow moisture to be released.

Neanthe Bella Palms prefer soil that is lightly moist, with a slight period of drought between waterings. Water when the top 1” - 2” inches of the soil are dry, likely every 7 - 10 days. Too much moisture in the soil can cause root rot, while too little can lead to brown and crispy leaves. Check in with the soil once a week until your establish a routine with your plant.

Rotate your plant periodically to ensure even growth on all sides and dust the leaves often so the plant can photosynthesize efficiently. When dusting the leaves, also take the opportunity to inspect the undersides and keep an eye out for pests.

Remember each plant is a unique living thing and may have varying needs, especially in their individual locations. Pay attention to the condition of your Neanthe Bella Palm and its watering needs and you will have a long and happy relationship.

Standard Planter Instructions

There are two types of standard planters offered by Greenery NYC—those with drainage holes, and those without. Within those two categories are an array of sizes and styles to choose from. The presence of drainage holes and size of the vessel play a role in the quantity and frequency of water given to your plant.

Plants purchased in a pot without a drainage hole have been set up with a built-in drainage system. A layer of hydro stones (porous, absorbent material made of recycled glass) has been placed beneath the soil to act as a reservoir for any excess water that flows through the soil. You will need to be slightly more cautious not to pour too much water into these containers as there is no way for the excess water to escape. We suggest pouring small amounts of water in bit by bit, until you have reached the desired moisture level in the soil.

For plants potted with drainage, water until it begins to come out the bottom of the pot and into the catch tray.

Always be sure to assess your plant's watering needs upon receiving it. Refer to the routine maintenance section for your plant’s specific moisture requirements. 

Self Watering Container Instructions

The self-watering planters require a good, solid watering of the topsoil after they are first placed. This is important because the roots of the plants need to grow into the reservoir first in order to drink from it. Follow the standard planter instructions for the first four weeks. Then the reservoir is ready to be tested.

TEST: After four weeks, fill the water reservoir until the red indicator reaches the MAX line. If the indicator goes down over the first few days, it means the plant is ready for regular reservoir servicing. If not, be sure to continue top watering for a few more weeks, until the red indicator goes down, meaning the plant has started drinking from the reservoir.

RESERVOIR SERVICING: Once the indicator goes down, do not refill the reservoir right away. Similar to how humans need a breath of air between gulps of water, almost all plants require a drying out period. Always allow for the reservoir to empty all the way, and after a drying out period of a few days, be sure to refill it until the indicator reaches the MAX line.

From here on out, you should NEVER topwater the plant. If you water from the top, it can drown the plant. In the Self Watering Container, the top layer of soil will eventually become extremely dry and hard, and may even pull away from the edges of the pot. This is not a cause for concern, but simply because the plant is drinking directly from its roots in the water reservoir.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Neanthe Bella Palms easy to care for?

  • Yes! They are very adaptable and forgiving.

Help! My Neanthe Bella’s leaves are turning grey and crispy.

  • Your plant may look thirsty, but check the soil first. If it’s unclear whether the soil is too wet or too dry, gently tug on the frond that is showing discoloration. If it pulls away and is easily removed then the plant is likely overwatered. Allow the soil to dry almost completely before watering again. If the discolored leaves are resistant to removal, then the plant is likely underwatered. Check back with the care guide and adjust your watering routine.

How can I prevent spider mites on my palm?

  • Bella palms are susceptible to spider mites, a tiny house plant pest that is difficult to spot. Mist your plant frequently as the mites prefer dry conditions.

How often should I fertilize my plant?

  • In general, house plants will thrive when they are fertilized spring through fall. Fertilize once a month with an organic houseplant fertilizer, following the package instructions for dilution and administration. Greenery NYC uses an organic potting mix with a slow release fertilizer in the soil so your plant will not need fertilizer within the first 6 months of receiving it.

How often does my plant need to be repotted?

  • For smaller desktop plants, we suggest repotting once every 12-18 months. Typically you want to choose a potting vessel 1”- 2” larger in diameter to allow for growth. Don’t choose a pot much larger than the previous as this could drown the plant's roots. If you prefer to maintain the current size of your plant, repot into the same vessel, providing new soil and trimming away some roots and foliage. Spring or summer is the ideal time to repot as the plant is at its strongest.
  • For larger floor plants, we suggest repotting every 18-24 months. Typically you want to choose a potting vessel 2”- 4” larger in diameter to allow for growth. Don’t choose a pot much larger than the previous as this could drown the plants roots. If you prefer to maintain the current size of your plant, repot into the same vessel, providing new soil and trimming away some roots and foliage. Spring or summer is the ideal time to repot as the plant is at its strongest.

Additional Care Guides