A guide for growing foxtail palm and its proper care.

Everybody loves greenery whether in the forest or their surroundings. Are you also thinking about the beautiful tree species in your surrounding with a great greenery scenic beauty? Then the foxtail palm could be the one for you as it fulfill your dream of having a beautiful palm in your home or garden. 

Let’s explore on how to grow foxtail palm and have its proper care including some additional information on its flowers and more in details.  


What is foxtail palm tree?

Foxtail palm is a beautiful fast-growing species native to Queensland Australia and is very popular in warmer regions all over the world. This palm species from Arecaceae family is called as foxtail palm because of its plumose leaves at the top scattering as the bushy fox’s tail.

Botanical Name: Wodyetia bifurcata

Mature healthy foxtail palm can reach a height of about 30 feet. When the fronds die of old age they drop from the tree themselves so you don’t need to care about its fronds. Its single or multiple trunk is smooth, thin, and self-cleaning. The beautiful white flowers and clusters of colorful olive green fruits at early stages and orange-red when ripe make this species mesmerizing.


How to grow or propagate foxtail palm by seed?

Fruits are the source of fresh foxtail palm seeds which is the best and most effective way to propagate this species. Although other ways such as propagation through cutting, division and air layering are also in practice; they haven’t been found to be effective and thus not applicable. 


Steps to be followed

1. First of all, you need to harvest the seeds properly. Harvest the seeds when the fruit starts ripening but remember not on overripening. Pluck the best red fruits from the clusters. You will get one seed in one mature fruit.

2. Then, soak the seeds in warm water for about 48-72 hours changing the water daily. If you find the floating seeds then remove them as they lack endosperms and thus couldn’t germinate.

3. After that dip them in a solution of 1 (bleach): 10 (water) and rinse thoroughly. Now scarify or rough up the seeds. To scarify the seeds, rub them gently with sandpaper or a file, or nick the outer coating with the tip of a knife. But don’t apply too much pressure.

4. Lastly, plant the seeds in your garden immediately as foxtail palm seeds don’t store well i.e. the more fresher the more better it is.

5. Alternatively, you can propagate a foxtail palm indoors. Plant fresh foxtail palm seeds in a container filled with a moist, sandy, well-drained potting mix or coco-peat. The pot should be at least 6 inches deep, although 10 to 12 inches is even better.

6. You can plant several seeds in a pot, not touching, or you can plant a single seed in a pot. Plant the seed horizontally and cover the seeds with about one-fourth inch of potting mix.

7. Place the pot in a plastic bag. Unless you have a greenhouse or you live in a very warm climate, you’ll need to place the pot on a heat mat set to 86 to 95 degree F (30-35 degree C).


How to plant foxtail palm in a good manner?

– Planting the foxtail in a good manner gives you with the best result and fast-growing palm tree. 

– Make a hole and put organic peat humus or topsoil into the hole. Then plant the foxtail there.

– But in order to get the best healthy foxtail palm you need to plant palm by maintaining the spaces between palms. If you are planting the palms in a row, keep at least 6 feet of spacing between two palms.  

– You need to plant foxtail about 9 feet far from the house because the branch of foxtail can hit your house. You can plant it on four corners of your house which really gives attractive looks to your surrounding.

– It can be planted or transferred in the medium pot aside from your swimming pool when they are young to add beauty. 

Planting in this proper way will give you fantastic palm with adorable beauty and also keep them free from the transfer of the disease from one to another & ease for maintenance.


How to care foxtail palm?

– Foxtail palm is well-adapted to growing in areas where winter temperatures stay warm. It needs full sunlight of about 80-100%.

– To get the best and healthy palm you need to keep the soil moist but not overwatering.

– Make sure that your pots and soil have good drainage to let the water seep through. Water-logged condition is not good for foxtail palm.

– Foxtails are palm which are heavy feeders and thus need fertilization particularly granular palm fertilizer that contains micronutrients. You should do this in spring, summer, and autumn during their phase of rapid development to ensure its proper growth and development.

– Supplement feedings by applying manganese or magnesium, to keep their fronds (major attraction) prettiest deep-green in color. Your palm may suffer from a deficiency in low potassium soils. Thus, supply of potassium or potash fertilizers is also recommended.

– The fronds keep falling when they become old so keep it at a place and use it as a fertilizer later on when it gets decayed or you could use it as a mulch too if needed.


Benefits of foxtail palm

1. Its quick growth means you can enjoy a good-size tree in just a few years.

2. It’s easy to care for a Foxtail Palm. 

3. It is a low-maintenance plant that lifts the spirits in any garden or home.

4. This adds beauty to your garden and home.

5. It consumes carbon dioxide and provides fresh oxygen.

6. Be careful not to have the seeds as its poisonous if ingested.



1. It is self-cleaning as it cleans its frauds when they get old. 

2. It is firstly known in 1978 when an Aboriginal man bought it to a botanist.

3. The leaves of this palm look like the tail of a fox so it is called foxtail palm.

4. It has a single flower petal.

5. The flowers and fruits are in clusters.

6. It grows more than a foot per year.

7. It is also an endangered species.

8. The foxtail palm is a species of palm in the family Arecaceae, native to Queensland, Australia.


Problems (Diseases) in foxtail palm and their solutions:

Usually foxtail palm doesn’t have any problems, but it may get some if you won’t care about it at all. Then you might start worrying and stressed about why my foxtail is dying. Here are some of the common problems and their solutions which might be of great help for you:

You can also contact the nearest botanical specialist for your problems if the condition of your palm gets worse. This can be the best solution. 


a) Crown rot or Root rot:- 

If you plant your palm in cold climates or wet soils, the palm might develop fungal diseases such as root rot and crown rot which could be fatal too. Root rot develops when the roots are water-logged too long.

Symptoms: Crown rot symptoms include fronds turning brown and the center stalk dying. Root rot above ground shows wilting and slow growth and root can turns soft and mushy in case of below-ground root rot. 

– Solution: These diseases can be avoided by cultivating the foxtail palm in temperate climates and in well-drained soils. Furthermore, to avoid fungal infections and diseases, make sure that your Foxtail is getting enough nutrients from the soil.


b) Iron or potassium deficiency:-

This species can catch up with the problem of iron and potassium deficiencies which could further exacerbates the risk of other diseases caused by these deficiencies. Sometimes overwatering could also cause these sort of deficiencies due to runoff and leaching.

– Symptoms: Yellowing of leaves that might turn into brown and necrotic at tips.

– Solution: Add slow-release potash or mixed nutrient fertilizers once to twice a year only.


Some Tips

1. Over-fertilizing your Foxtail would be harmful to its growth. So you need to know about the amount of fertilizers that you add to the soil.

2. The palm may develop fungal infections from overwatering. So plant the tree with the plants whose requirements are the same as the foxtail. You can shot out the problems by maintaining a good level of the soil.

3. Therefore you need to study the requirements and proper caring of the foxtail plant, then only you will be able to get the healthy, fresh, and beautiful disease-free foxtail plant in your yard.


So in this article, we hope that you get to know a lot on guide for growing foxtail palm and its proper care. We hope this article will help to learn about the foxtail palm in detail. If you want to study and learn more about other indoor and outdoor plants visually with proper guidance you can visit our youtube channel learnagro

Happy reading and enjoy your time!



keshav nepal

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