Palm trees are a regal plant; they are tall, green, and stunning.
Having these plants at home is extremely beneficial as they not only beautify your house but also purify the air.
Palm trees have a calming presence, and taking care of houseplants can have a positive effect on us.
However, most of us get confused about which palm tree would best suit our living space.
In this article, tips on how to take care of an Areca Palm and Cat Palm will be elaborated upon along with its similarities, differences, and other details.
What Is Cat Palm?
Although it highly resembles a tree, a Cat Palm is a plant that can thrive as a houseplant, too, as long it is given plenty of love and care.
Originally from southeastern Mexico, the name Cat Palm is short for Cataract Palm or Cascade Palm.
The average height it grows up to is six feet, but it can take years for it to reach up to that height.
This plant is great as an indoor plant as it purifies the air, easy to maintain, and adapts well indoors.
A fun fact about this plant is that it was a symbol of social status back in the Victorian ages, as it was a plant that only the elite class possessed.
Decades have passed, but the plant still looks regal and elegant and is a sight after houseplant.
However, it can be challenging to take care of this plant, but you are good to go once you get the hang of it!
Why Is It Called Cat Palm?
As mentioned earlier, the botanical name of the Cat Palm is Chamaedorea cataractarum.
In Greek, this name means "a gift on the ground."
The name Cat Palm is the shortened version of Cataract Palm.
What Is Areca Palm?
Areca Palm (Chrysalidocarpus lutescens) is one of the most popular palm plants as it looks gorgeous when paired with any interiors style.
This plant also has a long life span and can survive for at least 10 years inside a home when taken care of well.
The most important factor to consider while growing an Areca Palm is that it needs plenty of light.
It is best placed near a window or in a room with lots of sunlight.
Note: If you want more information on the identification, here's a useful guide for your indoor palm identification process.
Similarities Between Cat Palm And Areca Palm
To those who are unfamiliar with palm trees, both palms can appear similar at first sight.
They are both well-suited for being house plants; both purify the air and can thrive indoors as well as outdoors.
Differences Between Cat Palm And Areca Palm
Here's the list of differences between these two varieties of palms -
The bottom part of the Cat Palm stem is bulky, while the stem of the Areca Palm is pencil-shaped.
Number Of Stems
The Cat Palm has fewer stems, around a dozen in a 10-inch pot, than the Areca's stems, which are also much thinner.
Areca Palms are quite tall, while Cat Palms are uncharacteristically small palm trees.
Cat Palms almost resemble a bush.
Cat Palm Or Areca Palm - Which Is Best Indoor Palm?
The Cat Palm and Areca Palm look similar in appearance.
The Areca Palm is slightly easier to care for, but apart from that, both the plants have the same features and characteristics.
If you prefer a larger, more towering plant, then the Areca Palm is perfect for you.
If you want a palm tree but do not have lots of space, then the Cat Palm will favor your living space better!
4 Best Fertilizers For Indoor Palm Plants
Here's a list of fertilizers for your palm plants -
1. Jobe's Palm Outdoor Fertilizer Spikes
This fertilizer is essential for nourishing the roots of the palm plant.
This is a no-fuss fertilizer, and all you need to do is insert the spikes in the soil two times a year between the months of March and October.
The spikes will directly provide nutrients into the soil and roots of the plant.
The best results can be achieved if the plant is first watered thoroughly before fertilizing.
2. Miracle-Gro 3002910 Shake' N Feed Continuous Release Palm Plant Food
Containing ingredients like magnesium, iron, and manganese, this fertilizer helps the palm plant to grow healthy and tall.
The natural microbes in the soil are fed by the compost that is in the fertilizer.
This fertilizer can be used for outdoor as well as indoor plants.
All you need to do is feed the fertilizer granules into the top layer of the soil and water and mix well.
3. Earth INC 756P Exotic Exotic Blend Palm, Tropical & Hibiscus Fertilizer
This is a sustainable fertilizer that is developed in the USA.
This fertilizer is a feed-grade ingredient enriched with multi-minerals, proteins, and trace elements that create healthy soil for growing strong, hearty plants.
This fertilizer will suit all kinds of palm trees as well as subtropical plants.
For best results, the fertilizer should be added into the soil every other month, starting from April until August.
4. Carl Pool Palm Food
This fertilizer is developed for palm trees especially.
The amount of magnesium and manganese in this fertilizer blend is more than what palm trees require.
Additionally, it also contains nitrogen that supports the fast growth of the palm plant.
This fertilizer does not contaminate groundwater and resists leaching.
One application of the fertilizer lasts the palm plant three to four months of coverage.
5 Tips To Grow Cat Palm And Areca Palm Indoors
All palm plants require the same conditions to grow in a healthy manner.
Here are some of the tips to keep in mind while growing a palm:
Both Areca Palm and Cat Palm need plenty of light to grow.
The plants should be kept near a window or in a well-lit room so that they receive as much sunlight as they can.
Palm plants should be watered regularly, but this does not mean they like to be left in stagnant water.
Ensure that the soil is dry between watering sessions to avoid overwatering.
Draw up a schedule to avoid underwatering, too.
Fertilizer should be fed to the palm plants as and when required.
This will depend on the fertilizer you are using, so a bit of prior research will be enough to know how much food your indoor plant needs.
Palm plants do not like cold weather and should be kept in a warm area of the house, especially during winters.
However, do not keep the plant directly in front of a heat vent or near drafts.
The Areca Palm can withstand pruning, and so can the Cat Palm.
But keep in mind that the shape of the leaves will shape once you regularly prune the brown or yellowish edges of the plant.
The size of the Cat Palm resembles a bush, which makes it an excellent houseplant in terms of size but other than that, having this easy-to-care-for plant will surely brighten up your living area with its fluffy fronds.
There is no one palm that can be labeled as the best plant, as it all depends on your needs and preferences.
Not all palm plants are alike, even within the space type of palm!
Yes, it does, but the palm prefers indirect sunlight to direct light.
It would suit the palm to be kept in a place with lots of sunlight as the cat plant needs more sunlight than the average palm.
Apart from being an attractive plant with little maintenance needs, the Cat Palm also purifies the air of the room in which it is kept!
If you prefer to keep your palm trees outside, it is best to keep them inside during the winter and fall.
Palm trees do not tolerate the cold weather and would do well if kept somewhere warm during the months when the air gets windy or chilly.
Over To You
Well, that's pretty much about the Cat Palm vs. Areca Palm comparison!
As you can see, there are more similarities between them than differences.
But if you are looking to get one of these for your indoor decor, I'd suggest you go for the Areca Palm.
It just looks stunning, especially when the sunlight falls on its leaves.
Meanwhile, if you liked this comparison guide, do share it with your friends and family.