How Often to Water Your Ponytail Palm?

Written by Ivy

Feb 01 2023

How Often to Water Your Ponytail Palm?

Ponytail palms have rosettes of long, leathery leaves that, when given insufficient water, wilt and turn yellow.

Ponytail palms typically require watering every two weeks. Alternatively, wait until the top two inches are dry before retrieving chemical-free or rainwater. Utilize moisture to determine when to water the Ponytail palm the most effectively.

But you also need to be aware of the adjustments your ponytail palm watering requires. Learn the best ways to water a ponytail palm by reading on.

How to Water Your Ponytail Palm?

Due to its high drought tolerance, your ponytail palm can go for weeks without water. It can be tricky to know when your plant needs water, so here's what we suggest:

Heavy Lifting

When your Ponytail Palm is freshly watered and when the soil is completely dry and it needs to be hydrated, pay attention to its weight. Is your plant significantly lighter than usual? Then you should drink some water.


Get Your Hands Dirty

To check the soil's moisture content, press your finger into it. Until you reach the roots, does the soil feel dry? Then now would be a good time to water. If you detect any moisture at all, hold off for a few days and do the "touch test" again before watering. Only water the Ponytail Palm when the soil is completely dry because overwatering is one of its most frequent problems.

You may notice limp, drooping, and possibly browning and curling leaves if you unintentionally leave the soil of your Ponytail Palm completely dry for an extended period of time. The trunk may begin to sag and become limp at this point. A thorough soak is required if the soil is incredibly dry from top to bottom of the pot.
Read More: Why Does My Ponytail Palm Have Brown Tips

How Often Do You Water a Ponytail Palm?

Succulent plants like the Ponytail palm can withstand droughts because they store water in their trunks.

A prolonged period of dry, arid conditions won't allow them to survive, though.

As a result, water your Ponytail palm plant once the top 2 or 3 inches of soil have become completely dry. In the alternative, watering once per week during the summer will do.

However, you shouldn't stick to a single rigid watering guideline because it can change depending on other physical factors.

If you notice brown, crispy, droopy, or dry leaves on your Ponytail palm, give it a quick drink of dry compost and soil.

Here are a few more methods for determining how often and how much to water your Ponytail palm plant.

  • Deepen the soil with chopsticks by 2 to 3 inches.
  • Go to water if there isn't any moisture.
  • If the pot feels lighter after being weighed, add water.
  • Get a moisture meter and check the soil's moisture content before fetching water.
  • Take a look at the Ponytail palm bulb. Water it if it looks wrinkly or deflated.

How to Save Underwatered Ponytail Palm?

Here is a step-by-step instruction manual for saving a severely undersea Ponytail palm.

  • Put the Ponytail palm plant in the sink with some room-temperature water.
  • As soon as bubbles start to form, let the plant soak in water.
  • Removing the plant from the sink will allow you to use the drain holes to drain any extra water.
  • Assure that the soil is evenly moist, and give the plant some rest.
  • Any brown, wholly dried-out, or damaged leaves should be removed with sterile pruners. (Read More: How To Prune A Ponytail Palm Plant)

Place the plant in soft light that is shielded from the sun.

Your Ponytail palm will become hydrated again in an hour or two.

Read More: 

Signs You May Be Overwatering Your Ponytail Palm

Despite the weekly watering recommendation, a small survey at PlantsCraze found that the majority of gardeners frequently overwater their Ponytail palms.

Therefore, keep an eye out for these indicators to determine whether you are overwatering them and act accordingly.

  • Leaf tips start to turn yellow, and young leaves may go completely yellow.
  • The root starts to rot, becoming constantly discolored and soggy.
  • The bulb might seem flimsy and soft before starting to rot.
  • On top of the soil, a white or grayish mold develops.
  • The plant pot has a bad odor coming off it.

If you see these indicators, repot the plant right away after cutting off any rotten or decayed areas of the plant. (Read More: How to Repot Ponytail Palm)

In order to stop the fungus from spreading further, apply fungicides to the root ends.

Use a new potting mix when repotting that contains sand, perlite, and potting soil that has been improved with organic manure.

The Best Watering Technique for Ponytail Palm

Here are a few recommended ways to water your ponytail palm.

Watering Techniques Specification
Rainfall Method Water from a rainfall is ideal because it is chemical-free.

Gather rainwater or allow the plant to receive direct rain.

However, avoid submerging your Ponytail palm in water for too long.
Watering Can Use distilled water

Soak the Bonsai till water oozes out from drain holes

Use a moisture meter before watering.
Bottom Watering

The plant pot should be atop the saucer once it is filled.

Every now and then, replace the water.

Occasionally use overhead water to rinse off salt buildup.

Factors That Impact Watering Ponytail Palm


Temperature, humidity, climate, and a number of other factors affect the Ponytail palm's watering requirements.

The elements that affect watering Ponytail palms are as a result listed below.

1. Location (Indoor Vs. Outdoor)

Due to increased sunlight, heat, and low humidity, ponytail palm plants kept outside require more water. (Read More: How Much Light Does Ponytail Palm Need)

Indoor plants, however, might use less water because of the controlled environmental conditions that cause the soil to dry slowly.

As a result, change your watering routine and give indoor Ponytail palm plants less water than outdoor ones.

2. Temperature & Humidity

Temperature and humidity have a direct impact on transpiration rate, so different watering requirements apply.

Ponytail palm typically grows best in environments with humidity levels above 40% and temperatures between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. (Read More: How Big Do Ponytail Palms Get)

When temperatures are higher and the humidity is lower, the rate of transpiration increases and the plant becomes dehydrated.

Consequently, your Ponytail palm needs more water in the summer than it does in the winter.

To meet the Ponytail palm's rate of dehydration, you can adjust your watering routine accordingly.

In the summer, water your Ponytail palm once every one to two weeks; in the winter, water it only once per month.

3. Type of Potting Mix

Low water retention well-draining soil can dry out quickly and need watering much more quickly.

However, potting mixture with a higher water retention rate can maintain moisture for an extended period of time, requiring less frequent watering.

Additionally, succulents hate having wet feet, like the Ponytail palm. To ensure that watering your Ponytail palm won't cause any issues, aim for a moderately water-retentive soil.

4. Pot Size & Type

Pot size and type are additional factors that affect water requirements.

In general, larger pots can accommodate more soil, which results in greater water retention and prolonged drying times.

Additionally, unlike plastic pots, terracotta or clay pots facilitate evaporation, hastening the drying process.

As a result, small plastic Ponytail palms might require more frequent watering than small ones in terracotta or clay pots.


Should You Mist Ponytail Palms?

The plant can stay clean by misting the leaves of the Ponytail palm. Misting the plant can also benefit it if the humidity is low.

Consequently, you can mist your Ponytail palms with a spray bottle.

Misting a plant excessively, however, is not good for it. Succulent ponytail palms need little water to survive.

Spray bottles can be used to mist the Ponytail palms once a week in the morning.

However, avoid over-misting the leaves to prevent them from remaining wet for too long, as this invites pests and fungus infections.
Read More: Is Ponytail Palm Toxic To Cats

Final Thoughts

Water should be provided to ponytail palms every two weeks. Although your ponytail palm can go for weeks without watering due to its extreme drought tolerance, this does not mean you should never water it.

To keep your Ponytail palm healthy, try to provide the proper amount of water by adhering to a flexible watering schedule.

After applying fertilizer, don't forget to thoroughly water your Ponytail palm to prevent chemical burns.

All The Best!