These days you may see a curious houseplant on sale in box stores and garden centers: a baby coconut (Cocos nucifera), freshly germinated, its huge nut still visible, very tightly packed into a pot and probably with roots coming out of the drainage holes. This really is a coconut palm… but it is not a good houseplant!
Although the idea of growing a coconut tree in the house may seem very attractive, in fact, it is almost impossible to grow this plant indoors. First, it requires very intense light, being intolerant of shade even on the tropical beaches on which it grows naturally. It is essentially impossible to obtain so much light between 4 walls, even in a greenhouse and especially outside of the tropics. Secondly, it needs air high humidity, otherwise spider mites will devour it. And thirdly, temperatures need to stay above 75?F (24?C) all year long or it will slowly die.
Of course, do you even have enough room for a plant whose fronds reach 13 to 20 feet (4-6 meters) long and whose (trunk), up to 100 ft (30 m)? Anyway, the plant will not live long enough to form a trunk… especially in the small pot in which it is sold.
Just to give you an idea, even the great botanical gardens of the northern hemisphere (Kew, Montreal, Berlin, New York, etc.) are not able to cultivate this large palm tree other than for very short periods and focus instead on more cooperative palm species. Do you think you have more than horticultural skills than they do?
I suggest you simply avoid purchasing this plant. If you want to grow a palm tree indoors, there are many other species that grow there easily and are found without difficulty in garden centers. So why waste your energies on a plant that will likely survive only a few months, going downhill all the way?
If ever it’s too late and you’ve already bought one, at least repot it into a bigger pot. When you see plants with abundant roots reaching out of every drainage hole, that the plant is already suffering from the lack of space for its roots. You’ll have to cut the pot off, though: there’s no other way to extract the poor dying palm without seriously damaging it.