Dracaena Marginata-How to Grow Care Guide

Hi Judy. I’m a dumb bachelor who rescued what look like a couple of palms that someone had tossed out. They are contained in big outdoor containers that don’t look ideal for drainage and I’m worried I’m overwatering. Small apt and I don’t have the opportunity to take them outside to give a good drenching/draining. Any ideas? Thanks!

Hi David,

Your plants are called Dracaena Marginatas (they are NOT palms). A Dracaena marginata, or Madagascar Dragon tree as they are sometimes called, are easy-care durable indoor plants well suited for homes if you are very careful with your watering. Over-watering causes root-rot and is the main reason a dracaena marginata dies. Water well and don’t water again until at least the top 50% of the soil is dry. In low light, it could take up to three weeks for the soil to dry out. Brown tips on the leaves indicate over-watering or too much fluoride or salt in the water. Never use water that has passed through a softener (too salty). If your household water has a lot of chemicals, allow it to sit out overnight before using it. Numerous yellow leaves at the bottom mean a Dracaena marginata needs more water. If your container has no drip holes, you should probably buy a water meter so you can check how wet the soil is at the bottom of the pot so you don’t water too often.

You can read all my care tips in the Popular Houseplant section of the website.