Parlor palms can easily last for 5 weeks indoors without water. Parlor palms are easy to take care of, are drought hardy. Parlor palms are prone to overwatering but will last well if watered deeply. Parlor palms are a great low care indoor plant and can last for up to 5 weeks without water if you forget.
The best way to keep Parlor palms happy is to thoroughly water them every 3-4 weeks.
Move parlor palms away from bright sunlight if you need to leave them for more than 4 weeks without water. The palm fronds can start to dry out if you leave them for more than 4 weeks without water. If this happens, you can soak the pot in a bucket with water and a dash of seaweed. This will give them the best chance of recovering quickly.
This article will explore all you need to know about how long parlor palms can last without water and how to keep them alive when you are away on vacation.
How long indoor parlor palms can go without water
Indoor parlor palms growing in good quality soil can last for 5 weeks without any water. In cooler weather the parlor palms plant can last up to 5-6 weeks as the soil will stay moist for longer.
Parlor palms can dry out quicker in summer so it is important to deep water them every 4 weeks to keep them growing strong. While they can survive on less water their growth will slow if they are not watered regularly.
Top tips for keeping parlor palms alive with less water
Here are my top 5 tips for keeping parlor palms alive with less water.
1. Choose good quality potting mix
Plant parlor palms in premium potting soil will keep parlor palms moist for longer. A premium potting mix will contain a mix of composted bark mulch, fertilizer and sometimes soil wetters which help the soil to hold water. Adding some extra coconut coir to keep the soil moist for even longer. Worm casting also work well to help to improve the water holding capacity of the soil.
2. Deep water your parlor palm the day you leave for vacation
Deep watering your parlor palm on the day you leave for vacation is the best way to keep it happy for longer without water. Parlor palms will be happy for 4-5 weeks if they are given a deep and thorough water before you go.
To deep water your parlor palm place the pot in your sink or outside and thoroughly water all areas of the soil surface. Do this until you see the water start to drip out the bottom. Add a dash of seaweed solution to you watering can to feed the soil and roots before you go.
Another way to do this is to submerge the pot in a bucket of water for 5 minutes until it has thoroughly soaked through. Add some seaweed solution to the water to help to support root growth.
3. Place a pot tray underneath or use an indoor pot
After you have watered your parlor palm it is important to place a pot tray underneath to catch any drips. Another way to do this is to place the pot inside an indoor pot without drainage holes. It is fine to leave a small amount of water in the bottom of the pot if you are going away for weeks.
I would always keep this amount to less than ¼ of an inch to avoid causing root rot.
4. Move the pot away from windows
It is important to prevent your parlor palm from drying out too quickly, so move it away from windows. The glass can heat up and radiate heat towards your palm and can burn the leaf tips. It can also dry out the soil rapidly and cause damage to the palm.
5. The towel trick
The final trick I have to keep parlor palms alive for as long as possible is to use the towel trick. Place an old towel in the bottom of your bath and soak the towel. Put the pot on top of the towel and it can slowly absorb the water over a few weeks. Water the palm first so that the soil is fully moist.
This is a great way to keep your parlor palm happy for 5 weeks. It will slowly absorb water from the towel as the soil dries out.
How often parlor palms need to be watered for the best growth
Parlor palms are hardy plants and like to be watered every 3-4 weeks. You can thoroughly water parlor palms in your sink using your tap to make sure all areas of the soil are moist. Allow the pot to drain thoroughly before placing it back on a pot tray or inside an outer pot.
Parlor palms will dry out quicker during the summer. You may need to increase your watering schedule to once every 2 weeks. Check the soil with your finger and if it is dry 1-2 inches down, add more water.
In the winter slow down your watering schedule to watering every 4 weeks. Parlor palms hate being overwatered so if you notice the plant is getting brown on the leaf tips and the soil is soggy reduce the amount of water.
If the problem continues you may need to repot your plant. Soil can lose air and nitrogen if it is watered too often so give your parlor palm the best chance of recovery by repotting into fresh potting soil.
What happens if you don’t water Parlor palms?
If you don’t water Parlor palms enough they can dry out, the leaves can turn brown and crispy and the plant will eventually die. Parlor palms leaves will start to turn brown on the edges if they are drying out too much. Check the soil and if it looks dry and crumbly and feels dry 1-2 inches down it needs more water.
If your parlor palm is too dry, soak the whole plant in a bucket of water with some seaweed solution. Sit it in the bucket for 5 minutes and then take it out. Allow the extra water to drain and then bring it back inside.
This process of soaking can fully hydrate the soil. This will be enough to keep your parlor palm happy for another 4 weeks where you can repeat the process again. If the soil has become hydrophobic and won’t absorb water it is time to repot and give it some fresh potting soil.
I like to add some slow release indoor plant fertilizer 1 week after repotting. Trim off any damaged leaves and stems and your parlor palm should start to show signs of recovering. New stems can start to grow from the rhizomes after 2-3 weeks.
How Long Parlor Palms Can Go Without Water | Summary
Parlor palms can easily survive for 5 weeks without water if they are planted in good quality potting soil and are kept cool. Soaking them in water before you head off on vacation will help them to absorb the water they need to survive for a few weeks.
Large pots will last well without water compared to small pots. It is best to use the towel trick if you are leaving a small pot for more than 4 weeks without water.
Always place the pot away from a hot window during the warmer months to help them last longer without water.
I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.