Q. My pony-tail palm has sprouted a new plant on the side of the root ball. What should I do about this?


Beaucarnia recurvata, sometimes called pony-tail palm, is in the Asparagaceae family of plants. The swollen stem base resembles an elephant's foot. The base serves as a water reservoir during dry periods. It is native to Texas and Mexico. The stem tapers upward above the swollen base and is topped with a mass of hanging curly leaves.

Sometimes suckers grow near the base. You can leave the suckers to grow--creating a bushier tree--or remove them. If you prefer a single-trunked plant, you can cut the sucker off close to the root ball.

Alternatively, you can use the sucker to produce a new specimen. Do this by removing the sucker and planting it in a new pot with soil similar to the original plant. This is best done in the spring. Keep it well watered until it is established. 

In the wild, Beaucarnia can reach a height of 30 feet or more.


For tips on a variety of gardening topics, see our Plant Information Guides. - Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service



  • Last Updated Apr 02, 2018
  • Views 57
  • Answered By Anita Finkle

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