One of the common problems with growing palm trees is the yellowing of the leaves as a result of magnesium deficiency. A great remedy for this problem is using Epsom salt to fix magnesium deficiency. So, how do you use Epsom salt for palm trees?
Add one tablespoon of Epsom salt into a gallon of water and mix well. Pour the solution around your palm trees 2-3 times a year to maintain green foliage. For outdoor palm trees, apply Epsom salt directly around the tree then water twice a week to dissolve the solid salt into the soil.
Generally, Epsom salt is good for palm trees. A quick application of the salt solution can give your potted or inground palm trees a much-needed magnesium boost. The salt contains magnesium that helps in the production of chlorophyll – the green pigment found in trees.
Is Epsom salt good for palm trees?
Epsom salt is good for palm trees when there is a magnesium deficiency in the soil or the plant itself. It is basically crystallized magnesium sulfate containing 13% sulfur and 10% magnesium. You can apply an Epsom salt solution to give your palm trees a magnesium boost.
Magnesium plays an important role in the production of chlorophyll, a pigment that gives palm trees their natural evergreen color.
Since it is a water-soluble salt, Epsom salt will soak through the soil quickly to replenishing the soils with magnesium leaving your palm trees looking green and beautiful.
Pro tip: Epsom salt is not recommended if the soil is already salty because it has a high pH level and will increase the soil’s saline levels. Increased soil salinity compromises palm trees’ ability to draw in water.
Also, applying only Epsom salt on your indoor or outdoor palm trees is not enough because too much of this organic nutrient can deprive your palm trees of a good number of nutrients including iron, manganese, potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus.
Always apply in moderation or use Epsom salt together with other fertilizers such as Miracle-Gro Shake’n Feed and Alpha Chemicals potassium sulfate.
How to Apply Epsom Salt on Palm Trees
The best way to apply Epsom salt as a palm tree fertilizer is as a solution to make it easily accessible to the roots of the palm trees. Put on safety goggles, gloves, and protective gloves to protect your body from the salt.
Here’s how to apply Epsom salt on indoor palm trees:
- Put 1 gallon of water in a bucket and add 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt. Mix the solution carefully using a mixing stick.
- Place your potted plant in a dirty water sink and slowly water it with the solution you prepared until some of the solutions come out of the pot’s drainage holes.
- Wait until the salt-water solution drains fully.
- Repeat the watering process around three to four times before putting your potted palm tree back to its growing location.
- Apply Epsom salt on your palm trees at least two to three times per year.
For outdoor trees, I would advise you to use the Epsom salt powder or pellets directly as fertilizer on the trees. The amount may vary depending on the size of the trees because inground palm trees grown outdoors can be very tall and may require a lot more in terms of fertilizer.
Here’s how to apply Epsom fertilizer on palm trees grown outdoors:
- Scoop 2 to 6 pounds of Epsom salt and spread it uniformly around the root areas of your palm trees.
- The exact amount of Epsom salt you use will vary depending on the size of your palm trees. For instance, use 2 pounds of salt for trees that are around 8-10 feet tall.
- After spreading the salt over the root zones, pour clean water over the area to dissolve the salt and facilitate absorption.
- Repeat the whole process at least three times a year for better results.
Benefits of Epsom Salt for Palm Trees
As stated earlier, Epsom Salt treats magnesium deficiencies in plants and soils. It is often used to boost tomatoes, peppers, and other crops and also make sure the roses and flowers are blossoming. That’s not all. Epsom salt brings many benefits for palm trees and other trees. Below are a few of those benefits
1. It greens-up foliage
Palm trees are prone to yellowing due to pollution, pets, weather conditions, and drought – elements that cause magnesium deficiency in the soils and the plant itself. Magnesium in Epsom salt boosts the production of chlorophyll, an essential element that gives trees their green pigment. Epsom salt, therefore, make sure palm trees are greener.
2. It prevents leaf curl in palm trees
Although visible environmental factors are the main cause of leaf curling, magnesium deficiency has also been associated with leaf curling. So, Epsom Salt can also be used to overcome leaf curling in palm trees.
Besides preventing leaf curling, the salt makes palm trees more resilient to harmful environmental factors. Spray your curled foliage with a solution of Epsom salt and water until the leaves look perfect again.
3. Epsom salt treats palm tree transplant shock
One of the major problems of transplanting palm trees is transplant shock. This is a condition where palm trees wilt after transplanting because the roots struggle to absorb the nutrients from the new environment.
Adding a solution of Epsom Salt on the bottom of the transplanting holes can help the roots overcome transplant shock and increase the tree’s chances of survival.
4. It improves nutrient uptake
The benefit of Epsom salt goes beyond treating magnesium deficiency in palm trees and soils. Epsom salt can also improve nutrient uptake. One of the ingredients in Epsom salt, magnesium, increases the tree’s ability to absorb other essential nutrients such as phosphorus and nitrogen.
5. Epsom salt deters pests
Epsom salt has also proven effective in preventing pets such as slugs and voles. Spraying your palm trees with a solution of Epsom Salt can not only kill some pets that have already set up camp on the plant but it can also discourage some pests from coming closer to the plant. Don’t forget that there are a good number of pesticides that are specifically formulated for controlling pests on palm trees such as the Southern Ag Palm Nutritional Nutrional Spray.
6. It neutralizes soil pH
Last but not least, Epsom salt is also effective in neutralizing the soil PH. Most species of palm trees struggle to thrive in soils that are too alkaline.
Adding Epsom salt on any soil PH exceeding 7.5 could help to neutralize it thus making the soil a good environment for growing your palm trees.
How Much Epsom Salt For Potted Palm Trees?
1 teaspoon of Epsom salt is enough for one potted palm tree. However, the exact amount you will need will depend on the number of potted palm trees you want to treat with Epsom salt.
If you have several potted palm trees that you want to treat, I recommend you purchase Epsom salt in bulk. For instance, Epsoak Epsom salt can treat a good number of palm trees. This is a 19 lb bag of Epsom salt that can last for a year.
Which Palm Trees Need Magnesium Sulfate?
Most species of palm trees that are prone to magnesium sulfate deficiency need magnesium sulfate. One such species is Phoenix canariensis. Sago palm and majesty palm are also two popular types of palm trees that may need magnesium sulfate.
If you notice yellow bands along the margins of palm tree leaves with the center of the leaves remaining distinctly green, that’s a tell-tell sign that whatever species of palm tree you have needs magnesium sulfate. Other signs of magnesium sulfate deficiency to look for include leaflet tips on the oldest leaves of palm trees becomes necrotic and curling of leaves.