Chamaerops humilis Mediterranean Fan Palm

Ruler icon up to 20 ft. high x 10-20 ft. wide

Sun icon Full to part sun

Thermometer icon USDA zones 7-11

Handsome, multi-trunked tropical palms. These are slow to moderate growing, multi-trunked palms used for landscape specimens or filler. They are clean plants with a refined appearance, especially when trunks are exposed. In optimal conditions, you can expect a growth rate of about 1ft. per year. The bold accent palms work well around pools, water features, patios, large, raised planters, or planted en masse for background screens or privacy. Immature plants produce dark green palmate leaves all the way to the ground with straight, sharp spines along leaf petioles. They accept high heat, and they are one of the most cold hardy palms for southwestern gardens tolerating temperatures down to single digits. As most palms do, these prefer moderate to ample water in well-drained soils.

Cycas revoluta Sago Palm

Ruler icon up to 8 ft. high x 2-5 ft. wide

Sun icon Full to part sun

Thermometer icon USDA zones 9-11

Ancient bold evergreen accent plants. These are colloquially referred to as palms, but these plants are primitive Cycads that are native to a few isolated southern Japanese islands in the East China Sea. While they are relatively heat tolerant, hot, low desert afternoon sun should be avoided. It is also good to note that they grow naturally in wetter, tropical environments, which gives landscape designers a clue to provide them with loose, organically amended soils with good drainage and ample amounts of water during the growing season, with little to no supplemental water during the winter months when their growth virtually stops. The long dark green feather-shaped leaves are formed in whorled pattern around a center mound to eventually form a thick solid supporting trunk, however with a growth rate measured by inches per year, their development is painfully slow.

Phoenix roebelenii Pygmy Date Palm

Ruler icon up to 6 ft. high & wide

Sun icon Part to full shade

Thermometer icon USDA zones 9-11

Small, multi-trunked feather palm. These small, moderate to fast growing evergreen date palms are a delight around pools, patios, courtyards, and entryways where a tropical, easy-to-maintain accent tree is needed. They prefer well-drained soils with regular, consistent soil moisture. In spring fertilizer with a complete food that includes magnesium to help keep foliage looking green and healthy. Water, fertilize then water again to ensure slow-release fertilizers are breaking down properly. Or blend fertilizer with aged steer manure and applied as a top-dressing, then water that in. Removing older, lower yellow to dried leaves is the main maintenance requirement for these palms. They are happiest planted in part to full shade either in-ground or in large containers in low deserts. They do not mind being somewhat root-bound, but eventually they will need to be up-potted for continued top growth.