Sago Palm- How to Water

I purchased a small Sago Palm to keep in my bathroom. It came in a pot that had small decorative rocks around the palm. I can’t even get get my finger in to see if dirt is dry. Can it be watered from the bottom or what is the best way to water it?

Hi Cheri,

What kind of light does your bathroom have? A Sago Palm needs bright light with a little direct sun in the morning. Give a Sago Palm  ¼ of a turn each week to keep it from growing toward the light. In bright light a Sago Palm produces short thick fronds, in lower light the fronds are long and thin.


Rugged trunk topped with stiff narrow arching fronds growing in circular pattern.
Sago Palm

You can water from the bottom, but you still have to be able to know when it is time to set the plant in a saucer of water. You cannot leave it in water all of the time. The top 75% of the soil needs to dry out thoroughly before you water. Water more sparingly in the winter when there is less light and cooler temperatures. Be careful never to get water in the crown of a Sago Palm, this can cause crown rot disease and the eventual death of the plant. Sago Palms should never be allowed to totally dry out. If you don’t want to remove the decorative rocks so you can feel the soil, you should probably get a water meter. Stick a water meter deep into the soil to see how wet the soil is at the bottom of the pot. You can read more about water meters in the Glossary of the website.

You can read all my care tips for a Sago Palm in the Popular Houseplant section of the website.

These plants are considered poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children. Read more about common houseplants that are poisonous in Don’t Feed Me To Your Cat! A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants