Cat Palm vs Majesty Palm Compared: Which Should You Plant?

Cat Palm, Cataractarum Palm

Picking which plants to choose is a difficult situation any growers do not wish to experience. But for some mysterious reason, they will always end up having to pick one plant over another and it irks them in many ways. Yet, it seems like it is a normal scenario if you enter the plant world.

Deciding whether you should own a Cat Palm, or a Majesty Palm is dependent upon your lifestyle and preferences. However, after reading this article nine out of ten people will probably choose the ‘Cat Palm’.

Cat Palm vs Majesty Palm: What Are Their Differences?

The first task is to take a closer look at their differences as it will be the deciding factor which plant should you get.

Chamaedorea cataractarum (the cat palm, cascade palm, or cataract palm)
Chamaedorea cataractarum (the cat palm, cascade palm, or cataract palm)

As you go along, you will realize there are many differences between the two. Such differences include:

Leaf Shape and Texture

At first, you may mistake them to appear the same because they have arching fronds that come in dark green but, they are not.

If you touch them, you will notice that the Majesty Palm Leaves are tougher while the Cat Palm leaves are softer.

But this does not make any of them more or less than the other, it simply speaks of their unique profile.

Furthermore, the Majesty Palm can grow to an enormous size in the wild while the Cat Palm remains to have a small size.

But everything is different when grown as a house plant. Both are considered foliage plants when grown indoors because they do not produce flowers.

Leaf Size

The huge difference between the two is their leaf size. Normally, Cat Palm tends to be smaller than Majesty Palm.

As a result, Cat Palm leaves grow in a clump shape especially if you place them under the canopy of taller leaves.

The Majesty Palm grows in an upright structure and its leaves can grow wider than Cat Palm leaves. Again, it all boils down to your preference since bigger and taller plants need more space than smaller ones.

Before picking which plant to have, it is wise to consider the space in your area first.

Height and Structure

In the wild, the Majesty Palm can grow for up to 60-80 feet while the Cat Palm can rarely reach more than 10 feet.

As a houseplant, Majesty Palm is still bigger than Cat Palm with longer and rigid fronds growing from several stems while the Cat Palm only forms little soft fronds in its stem.

Majesty Palm
Majesty Palm


The humidity requirements are also a factor where both plants hugely differ. For example, despite its small size, the Cat Palm is tolerant of different conditions compared to Majesty Palms.

When Cat Palms show humidity stress, you can simply mist them lightly or place them in a pebble tray and they will regain their beauty in no time.

Majesty Palm, on the other hand, needs more humidity than Cat Palm just to maintain their stable look.

In other words, Majesty Palm is more demanding in terms of humidity and may require any extra work from you—something that the Cat Palm would not ask for.

However, it is not something that is not doable, it is only fair to mention such differences especially when choosing which one to plant.

Of course, you don’t want to regret it in the end, so you must know everything beforehand.

Soil pH

Typically, a CaOpens in a new tab.t Palm works perfectly fine in neutral soil which means you can use any regular potting soil.

Just add perlite or coarse sand to improve the drainage system and they are good to do.

Compare that to Majesty Palm, they prefer more acidic soil, and you can use a cactus potting mix mixed with peat to reduce the acidity a bit.

This part can be difficult for starters because you still must be familiar with all the mixing going on. At some point, you may perform a little experimentation until you get the right mixture for the plant.

Growing Requirements

The two plants also differ in terms of lighting requirements since Majesty Palm is more tolerant of bright light and allowing them to receive direct light for a couple of hours per day is a good idea.

The Cat Palm only prefers indirect bright light. As for temperature, both love to grow under 65-80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Furthermore, the Cat Palm is more tolerant of dry conditions, so you don’t have to worry if you forget to water them for days and half of the soil in the pot has dried.

You can simply apply enough amount of water and let it drain to prevent waterlogging.

Contrary to Majesty Palm, they like to keep their environment moist but not soggy, so you may need to constantly check them.

Cat Palm Vs Majesty Palm: What Are Their Similarities?

After talking about their major differences, we can now proceed to their similarities. Some of their similarities include:

Pest and Diseases

Both plants are susceptible to the attack of the notorious red spider mites. These pests are so tiny to the point they are nearly invisible.

To find them, look for a brown spot or small webs at the base of the leaves.

To kill them, you can simply spray a water solution using insecticidal soap to keep those pests off the grid.

Red spider mites don’t like moisture, so their greatest enemy is spraying water directly unto them.

Indoor Care Difficulty

Both are not easy to grow and careOpens in a new tab. for and it all depends on the capacity of your house to provide for their needs.

The Cat Palm, for example, requires bright indirect light and moist soil to thrive.

If your house doesn’t have access to bright indirect light, it will become difficult for you to grow Cat Palm which can be frustrating if you want to grow them.

On the other hand, the Majesty Palm requires bright light or full sun, regular watering, and misting.

If you are a busy person who cannot spare some time to water a plant, then growing Majesty Palm can be a difficult task for you as they require more attention.

It can also be frustrating if you wanted to grow Majesty Palm but can’t sustain their needs due to your schedule.

Which One?

In this segment, it is Cat Palm versus Majesty Palm, and which one should you plant?

For starters, they may look identical at first glance, but they differ in many ways that our naked eyes could not see.

Hopefully, this article will have introduced you to the important details of the two plants to help you decide which one matches your needs.

Each plant has its unique advantages and disadvantages but it all boils down to your preference.

Final Thoughts on Cat Palm vs Majesty Palm Compared: Which Should You Plant?

As you can see, both plants have their uniqueness in them.

Some will say that Majesty PalmOpens in a new tab. is more demanding than Cat Palm, and therefore advise you to pick the latter.

But that is not the sole basis for choosing which plant to grow.

Ideally, you must consider your capacity to care for a plant and the area in which you wanted to grow it.

Both plants are magnificent in their world and neither of them has lesser value than the other.

To answer the question of which plant should you choose, is to raise the question of ‘how much you can do for them?’.

Whichever plant you can careOpens in a new tab. for the best has to be the one you select.

Read More:

9 Common Problems and Possible Solutions of Kentia PalmsOpens in a new tab.

Patricia Godwin

Patricia has many years of experience as a content writer on various subjects, but her first love is gardening. She’s never met a plant she didn’t like and, consequently, she writes about every type of plant you can think of. Once an avid gardener with a herb garden, a succulent rockery, and a rose garden – to mention a few. Nowadays, she’s constantly on the move searching for interesting plants to bring to your attention; and explain to you all the details you need to grow, care and maintain these plants.

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