How to Grow Beaucarnea - Planting & Caring

By Sharon & Team   /   Succulents Category   /   2023

Beaucarnea, or Ponytail Palm, is an easy to grow, interesting looking houseplant that tolerates neglect. It has a long, thin trunk that resembles a ponytail, and long, green leaves. The Ponytail Palm is native to Mexico, and can grow to be quite large, up to 10 feet tall.

How to Grow Beaucarnea - Planting & Caring

Growing Easiness

Is it easy to grow Beaucarnea plant? While some plants are high-maintenance and need extra care, the Beaucarnea is an easy plant that doesn't require much attention. This hardy plant can tolerate neglect and still look great, making it a perfect choice for busy people or those new to plant care. The Beaucarnea is a slow-growing plant, so you won't have to worry about it outgrowing its pot too quickly. With its interesting shape and low-maintenance needs, the Beaucarnea is a great plant to add to your home.

Plant Size

How big can it be? The size of Beaucarnea plants can range from 30-60 cm, and in some cases, they can grow up to 1.5 m. These plants typically have a slender trunk with a crown of green leaves at the top.

Growth Rate

How fast is the growth? Common ly known as the elephant-foot tree, Beaucarnea recurvata is a slow-growing, drought-tolerant, evergreen tree that is native to Mexico. It can grow to a height of 20 feet, with a trunk diameter of up to 2 feet. The most notable feature of this tree is its swollen base, which can be up to 6 feet wide. The leaves are long and narrow, growing up to 2 feet in length. They are dark green in color and have a leathery texture. The flowers of the Beaucarnea recurvata are small and white, growing in clusters.

Beaucarnea Basic Knowledge

Plant Form Succulent
Family Agavaceae
Origin Tropical America, Mexico, Southern States of the USA

Lifespan, Perennial or Annuals

How long is the lifespan? While Beaucarnea plants are slow growers, they can live for a long time with the right care. If you're patient enough to wait for your Beaucarnea to mature, you'll be rewarded with a plant that can live for decades. With proper care, these unique plants can be a part of your life for many years to come.

Ideal Temperature

What is the ideal temperature? The reason it is best to keep Beaucarnea at 69,8°F in the summer is because if the temperature is higher, the plant will need to be sprayed regularly to prevent it from drying out. It is also advisable to take the plant outside occasionally to allow it to get some fresh air. In winter, the ideal temperature range for Beaucarnea is 50-59°F, but it should not be allowed to drop below 44,6°F.


What about the humidity? Eventually, the leaves will start to yellow and fall off if the humidity is too low. The Beaucarnea recurvata, or Ponytail palm, is a drought-tolerant plant that's native to Mexico. The plant stores water in its bulbous base, which is why it can survive for long periods without water. However, the plant does prefer a humid environment. Preferably, the humidity should be around 50%. If the climate is not too hot, spraying the plant with water is not necessary.

Light Requirement

What amount of light this plant needed? Common ly called an elephant foot tree or ponytail palm, the Beaucarnea plant is a striking, unusual-looking houseplant that's easy to grow. It's a member of the Agave family, and is native to Mexico. The Beaucarnea plant grows slowly to about 6 feet tall indoors. It has a thick, swollen trunk that's often compared to an elephant's foot. The leaves are long, narrow and strap-like, and they grow from the top of the trunk in a rosette. The Beaucarnea plant is drought-tolerant, and can go for long periods without water. When watering, allow the top inch of soil to dry out completely before watering again. Bright sun, in the shade grows very poorly. You can place near the south, and south-west window.

Soil Composition

What is good soil for Beaucarnea? Common Beaucarnea soil is a mix of garden soil, sand, and turf. You can also add charcoal, brick crumb, and rubble to the soil. Peat is not recommended. Very good drainage is required.

Watering Time

How much I must water Beaucarnea? Eventually, the top layer of Beaucarnea's soil should dry up between waterings during the summer; however, watering is rare, but when done, should be done in abundance. The lower the temperature is, the less often the plant needs to be watered. In spring and summer, Beaucarnea should be watered every 6 days; however, at other times of the year, every 15 days should be sufficient. In winter, the plant does not need to be watered at all.

Fertilizing and Nutritient

About fertilizer. While your Beaucarnea is growing, every 4-5 weeks feed it with diluted fertilizer. It's important not to overdo it with the fertilizer, because too much nitrogen is harmful and will make the leaves more rigid. If you'd rather not use fertilizer, in the spring you can replace the top layer of soil.


How to reproduce Beaucarnea? The reason it takes so long for the Beaucarnea to gain a decorative look is because it is propagated by branching apical shoots. These are bundles of leaves that come from old branched specimens. The plant is easily rooted in peat or sand, but it grows very slowly.


Why Beaucarnea won't bloom? The Beaucarnea, also known as the bottle tree or ponytail palm, is a interesting looking tree that, in its native Mexico, can grow up to 30 feet tall. However, when grown in a pot, it is more common to see a height of 6-8 feet. The Beaucarnea is a slow grower, and its rate of growth will depend on the size of the pot and the quality of the soil. The leaves of the Beaucarnea are long and thin, and they grow out of the top of the tree in a rosette pattern. The leaves are green, but they sometimes have a yellow or brownish tint. The Beaucarnea is a succulent, so it stores water in its leaves and in the bulbous base of the tree. The tree gets its common name, the bottle tree, from this bulbous base, which can grow to be as big as a water bottle. The Beaucarnea blooms very rarely, and when it does, the flowers are small and white with a lilac tint.

Transfer or Repotting

How much I must water Beaucarnea? Eventually, the pot becomes too small for the beaucarnea and it will need to be transferred to a larger one. It is best to do this in early spring every two to three years for young plants and every three to four years for adults. Do not try to transplant mature specimens. When transplanting, be sure not to plant the beaucarnea too deeply; it should be placed at the same depth it was in the previous pot. The new pot should be wide, but not too deep.

Caring The Beaucarnea

How to care the plant? When growing Beaucarnea recurvata, be sure to give the plant room to grow. Cracks on the trunk can be covered with garden crockery. The plant has thin, rather sharp leaves. The plant needs good ventilation.

Pests & Challenges

What is the challenge when caring Beaucarnea plant? The reason is that it is quite capricious. It is very choosy about the place where it will grow. It is very important that the plant has good lighting, but direct sunlight should not fall on it. The leaves of the plant are very large, they can reach a length of one meter. The leaves are very beautiful, they are dark green in color. The flowers of the plant are also very beautiful, they are white in color.

Toxic & Poisonous Type

Are Beaucarnea poisonous? The reason why this plant is poisonous is because it contains saponins. These saponins are toxic to dogs and can cause vomiting and diarrhea. The plant also contains other chemicals that can be harmful to dogs such as saponin, glycosides, and tannins.