The Ponytail Palm is long-lived and pretty easy to grow inside homes, but it actually isn’t a palm tree, but a succulent! These are part of the agave family, with rough leaves that are less stiff and thorny compared to the agave. The leaves will sprout from the top of its stem looking like ponytails, hence the name.
The ponytail’s base would taper up to a graceful and slender trunk, with a wide and grayish base that has cracking bark. This is also why they have the names ‘bottle palm’ or ‘elephant foot trees’. And if you plan to grow more than one trunk on this plant, it’s also fairly easy to do!
Read on as I show you how to grow multiple trunks on a ponytail palm.
How to Grow Multiple Trunks on a Ponytail Palm
There are many reasons why you might want to have multiple trunks on a ponytail palm. Whatever the reason is, you’ll be happy to know that it is possible to do so, which requires pruning.
However, we don’t recommend pruning ponytail palms, which are slow growers and low maintenance, so they don’t require it. If you want to stimulate the plant to grow multiple trunks though, you are able to do so by simply cutting off the growing tip, allowing your plant to re-sprout.
Doing this will have your plant grow multiple trunks that will start emerging from the soil level, then going all around the plant’s original base. You’ll see tiny stems beginning to grow all around the outer part of the edge you cut. While easy, you have to be careful as you do this, because you may end up accidentally cutting an essential part of the plant, affecting its health and development.
Take Note: Caring for Ponytail Palms
When you cut the growing tips, your plant will become a bit more vulnerable to cold weather, pests, and other animals for a few months until the new trunks have grown. This will be a few weeks or months of vulnerability, so your ponytail palm requires more monitoring and attention.
Here are a few bonus tips to care for your ponytail palm successfully, whether you plan to grow multiple trunks on it or not:
- These plants prefer to have a lot of light, so keep it in a bright location where there is indirect sunlight.
- Keep the soil fairly dry, watering it from the spring to fall seasons. Let the top inch of soil dry completely before you re-water. During the winter season, water the plant less frequently.
- When watering the plant, soak the soil, allowing excess water to drain from the bottom of your pot and into a dish. Allow the pot to sit in the dish for a few minutes, dumping out the remaining water.
- For fertilizing, do so during the spring using cacti or succulent fertilizer.
- As for temperature, room temperature is fine, but when it is winter, keep the temperatures slightly cooler, around 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit, which replicated the natural dormancy cycle of ponytail palms. Furthermore, when winter arrives, the plant shouldn’t sit near cold windows when night falls, since this can damage the plant from the extremely cold weather.
While growing multiple trunks on a ponytail palm is possible and can be done easily, it requires extra care, a bit more maintenance, and you have to be ready for anything that can happen. And while I don’t have the guts to do it, you can try it with an ‘extra’ ponytail palm. With proper care, it will work!
Wrapping It Up
I love ponytail palms for their unique appearance and how easy they are to grow and maintain. Growing multiple trunks is simple, provided that you prune it well and maintain it with proper watering and nutrition afterward.
Hopefully, this guide on how to grow multiple trunks on a ponytail palm helped you out with your future gardening plans. If you plan to do this with your ponytail palm, follow the tips I mentioned above now. Good luck!