Caring For Indoor Screw Pines: How To Grow A Screw Pine Houseplant

Image by David Eickhoff

By Susan Patterson, Master Gardener

The screw pine, or Pandanus, is a tropical plant with over 600 species that is native to the forests of Madagascar, Southern Asia and Southwestern islands in the Pacific Ocean. This tropical plant is hardy in the USDA growing zones 10 and 11, where it reaches up to 25 feet in height, but is commonly grown as a container plant in other regions. Keep reading for information on growing screw pine plants indoors.

How to Grow a Screw Pine

Growing screw pine plants is not difficult and the plant will reach heights up to 10 feet when placed in the right conditions. However, the variegated screw pine houseplant (Pandanus veitchii) is a dwarf variety that grows no more than 2 feet tall and is an option for those with less space. This plant has vibrant green foliage with ivory or yellow stripes.


Choose a healthy plant that has bright foliage and a solid upright habit. If you wish, you can repot your plant when you bring it home as long as you purchase your plant during the growing season. Do not repot a dormant plant.

Choose a pot that is at least 2 inches larger than the store pot and has drainage holes in the bottom. Fill the pot with loamy potting soil. Use caution when transferring the plant because they do have spines that may scratch. Repot your plant every two or three years as necessary.

Screw Pine Care Info

Screw pine plants require filtered sunlight. Too much direct sunlight will scorch the leaves.

Screw pine plants are drought tolerant when mature but require a regular supply of water for the best color display. Reduce watering during the dormant season. Caring for indoor screw pines also involves providing a rich and loam potting soil with excellent drainage.

During the growing season, the plant benefits from a weekly diluted liquid fertilizer. During the dormant period, fertilize only once a month.

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