Areca plant in winter
I brought my Areca plant in for the winter and it seems to be dying. Why? The Areca plant is usually outside so it gets the sun in the spring and fall but I brought it in for the winter. The leaves keep turning brown and I have been cutting them off. Am I watering too much or not enough?
The only way to tell if you're watering too much or not enough is to actually feel the soil moisture. You can use an electronic moisture meter, or some kind of tester stick ( a wooden dowel or bamboo kebob skewer) that you insert then run between your fingers, but it's most important to test moisture all the way to the bottom of the pot. Here's more information: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/testing-moisture-in-plants.htm
The areca palm want its soil to be very slightly damp to almost dry before it is watered again. If you pinch some soil between your fingers, it will still feel cool and soft, but it won't stick together. On the moisture meter, it will show less than 1/4 of the way between dry and moist. Here's more info on arecas: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/houseplants/areca-palm/growing-areca-palm-indoors.htm
Some other possible causes of browning leaves are the light reduction between outdoors and inside, and bugs or disease. One avoids the light problem by acclimating plants before bringing them in - that means to get them used to reduced light gradually: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/houseplants/hpgen/acclimate-plants-indoors-winter.htm
For bugs or disease, look carefully on the undersides of the leaves, and along the stems, for any whitish areas or sticky spots. The best control for these is spraying with soapy water; if you think you have any bugs, write us again.