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Sago Palm

For a stately and sturdy plant, look no further than the ancient Sago Palm, a member of the cycad family estimated to have been in existence since before the Jurassic period. The stiff, dark green leaves are held upright and surround a unique bulbous stem.

How to care for your Sago Palm

Use these instructions to care for a Sago Palm. This guide will tell you how to water a Sago Palm; its light, temperature, humidity preferences and any additional care it might need to help it grow.

Japanese Sago Palm

LIGHT

Your Sago Palm prefers bright indirect light to direct sunlight. Choose a south- or west-facing window, or supplement with a grow light to encourage growth and a deep green color.

WATER

Water your Sago Palm when 75% of the soil volume is dry. Water thoroughly, allowing it to soak into the soil until it drips out of the drainage hole. Remove excess water that collects in the saucer.

HUMIDITY

Sago Palms do fine in average household humidity.

TEMPERATURE

Maintain a temperature between 65-75°F. If moved outdoors for the summer, Sago Palms don’t mind the heat but will need to be watered more frequently.

FOOD

Water your Sago Palm once in the spring and once in the summer. Use a general purpose houseplant fertilizer or one formulated specifically for palms, diluted to half-strength.

TOXICITY

Sago Palms are considered highly toxic to pets and humans if ingested.

ADDITIONAL CARE

Aside from bright light and occasional fertilizer, your Sago Palm doesn’t require much care. It is susceptible to root rot, especially in the fall and winter months, so take care not to overwater it. The plant naturally sheds its lower leaves as it grows. As these leaves begin to yellow, they can be removed with a sharp cutting tool.

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What's a Sago Palm?

Botanical Classification: Cycas revoluta

About

Native to Japan, the Sago Palm loves hot weather and prefers to dry out between waterings. Choose an area with the brightest possible light—a few hours of direct sunlight each day are preferred, but not required. As the plant grows from the top, it will naturally shed lower leaves. Feel free to snip these leaves close to the stem with a pair of pruners. Keep your Sago Palm away from curious children and pets as this plant is toxic if ingested. 

Fun Fact

Sago palms are cycads, which are not actually in the palm family at all. Cyacds are some of the oldest plants coming from the Jurassic period.

Pictured Left: Japanese Sago Palm