Chamaedorea metallica

Metal Palm, Miniature Fishtail Palm

(2 customer reviews)

A remarkable palm tree with leaves exhibiting a metallic sheen, best seen when grown in shaded conditions. Its compact size and need for shade make it an ideal house plant – and it is produced by the thousand for this purpose world-wide.

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Origin: Southern Mexico
Genus: Chamaedorea
Species / Cultivar: metallica
Common Name: Metal Palm, Miniature Fishtail Palm

Plant Biography

Chamaedorea metallica is a solitary trunked palm from the rainforests of Southeastern Mexico, slowly growing a slender, ringed stem that carries a crown of simple, fish-tail lobed (bifid) leaves that curve inwards and are textured with the leaf veins.

It’s found on the dense wet forest understory along the Atlantic limestone slopes, up to 600 m in elevation.

It’s an incredibly tolerant plant to drought, despite its origin.

Chamaedorea metallica
Light: Medium
This plant likes a spot further away from bright windows, but still lit by natural light.
Soil: Indoor Potting Mix
Enjoys moist well drained soil with composted organics and some drainage material.
Temperature: 5 - 28°C
Temperature range at which this plant is healthiest and grows best.
Growth Rate: Slow
Expect to see quite small amounts of growth over the years.
Water Requirement: Light Watering
Water when several cm of soil depth is dry to the touch. Water must draining easily away.
Humidity: Medium
Easygoing in regular home conditions, keep away from cold draughts and heat sources.
Maintenance: Low
Requires no attention beyond correct position and watering. An ideal starter plant!
Eventual Height: 1.5m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 0.7m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.

Expert Tip

A bit of neglect is perfect for this miniature palm tree. A good shower in summer or a wash in the rain will help get rid of the dust build-up and restore the metallic blue-green sheen of the leaves.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Keep away from bright light.

Although a tropical plant, the Chamadorea metallica will cope for a short time with temperatures down to 5 degrees.

Regular watering is preferred in the growing season but it is important for no standing water in the pot which can encourage root rot.

Use a balanced organic sea weed based fertiliser in the growing season. Avoid applying the fertiliser too close to the base of the plant.

This clump forming palm tree can be easily propagated by division of the root mass, just before the growing period starts.

This is one of my favourite houseplants. On arrival it was perfect and absolutely stunning and in a shady spot it’s putting out new leaves and requires minimal care. A really striking houseplant and like all my plants purchased from the Palm Centre arrived in excellent condition.

Ruth Jacobs

This is one of my favourite houseplants. On arrival it was perfect and absolutely stunning and in a shady spot it’s putting out new leaves and requires minimal care. A really striking houseplant and like all my plants purchased from the Palm Centre arrived in excellent condition.

2 customer reviews for Chamaedorea metallica

This is one of my favourite houseplants. On arrival it was perfect and absolutely stunning and in a shady spot it’s putting out new leaves and requires minimal care. A really striking houseplant and like all my plants purchased from the Palm Centre arrived in excellent condition.

Ruth Jacobs

I bought a small one of these 18 inches tall on a visit to the Palm Centre ten years ago and it is now a fine specemin 5ft tall. It has been in a west fading bedroom away from the window and produces two to 3 new leaves together with two flower spikes (which because I only have one, doesn’t get fertilised and produce nuts) a year. It is easy to grow and gets potted on occasionally when potbound. The only regular maintenance it needs is to rotate the pot every couple of weeks to keep it growing upwards rather than bending towards the window. For those tempted – do it – it won’t dissapoint you.

Tom Horsfield