Ponytail Palm soil

lorissa111(z5bOH)September 8, 2012

I need to repot my Ponytail palm. What kind of soil would you recommend? It's leaves have been turning brown and the soil always seems wet ever since I repotted it around 4 months ago. I mixed potting soil with sand and it just doesn't seem to drain. Any recommendations?

Thanks Lori

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cactusmcharris

Lori,

For the easiest method to getting your plant back to health, take a good potting soil and cut it by at least 50% with perlite. Repot your plant in a larger pot (maybe 2-3" of annular space between the pot's sides and the rootball), after giving it a haircut (leave 4-6" of bangs), at the same soil level it's at. Don't water for a few days and then give it a drink. It needs more sun (this plant grows best in acclimated-to full sun), but your Beaucarnea recurvata should recover. Sand is a highly overrated soil ingredient and, most times, shouldn't be used if something else is available (and it usually is).

I expect in 10 years or so to see your plant like the one in the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Beaucarnea recurvata

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 11:57AM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

How often should these guys be repotted, I've had mine for about 3 years still in it's original pot. It gets a cup of water once a month year round whether it needs it or not, seems to be doing OK.
Annette

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 12:26PM
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cactusmcharris

Annette,

It's fine the way it is, if you want to keep it small , but it's like any other plant, mostly - the more resources you give it, the larger / more prosperous it will get. Since a lot of us grow it for its 'footprint', the more growing it can do the larger the foot gets.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 12:38PM
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juliebees2009(7)

Wish I could uploads a picture of mine it look just about like the smaller one and I have to say I never saw one that large in the first picture I love just coming and looking at what others have and get ideas I hope mine will grow tall it would be a beautiful thing to watch grow. Mine for ow if I can just keep it alive I will be happy..Anybody have some secrets on how they care for theirs I never had one of these before but its just different , the bottom of mine is still a bit small its out of the pot but not what you would call a foot...it's probably just a young plant. I probably will not live long enough to see mine grow as large as the first one.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 3:55AM
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scsva(7/VA)

Thanks for sharing those pictures Lori and Annette. I think they both look very good. I liked the plant in Jeff's picture but I prefer the longer dark green leaves.

Thanks again
Susan

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 6:49PM
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CorpsmanCooper(FL8b)

That is one heck of a ponytail palm Lori! WOW

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 12:46PM
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lorissa111(z5bOH)

Thanks for the responses. I wanted to give you an update. I repotted my ponytail palm. I used cactus potting soil and added some perlite. When I took him out of the pot there were no roots. I dipped him in a solution of water and RooTone before I repotted. I will let you know how he does. I have had him for over 15 years. When I got him from a friend he was half as tall. I have seen them in Mexico 3 stories high. I wish I would have left him in his original pot till it split. I have heard they like to be tight in their container.

Thanks again,
Lori

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 3:29PM
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CorpsmanCooper(FL8b)

Lori,

I received a ponytail palm from my husband's grandmother that was in the same condition! The roots were rotted off and some of the base. I removed as much of the rot as I could, dipped it in cinnamon and let it dry for a day or two. After it dried I planted it in a mix of 50% pea gravel, 25% perlite and 25% MG cactus potting mix. I didn't water it for another week. Low and behold I saved the darn thing. It's thriving and ready to be potted up!

~Erin~

Here's it now. I can't find the ones from before.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 4:52PM
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juliebees2009(7)

I will be honest I like mine the size it is I like Lori's but for me I have so many plants I dont have the room my son will not allow a plant in his room I have one that looks like cousin it its a air plant and he has the perfect lighting for it but no way. ughhh kids.....I have from African violets to the ZZ plant and I have a 3 story home and its full of one of everything I have it neat but each room has its on species of plant. People say well Jbees's don't worry about dirty air she has so many house plants....I can't stop Its addicting. Oh I even give away a lot except my orchids no way those things are hi maintenance.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 3:02AM
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