Common Names: Canary Island date palm
Family: Arecacea/Palmae (palm Family)
Palm Drought Tolerant Can be Grown in Containers Grows Well Indoors.
Has evergreen foliage Has Unusual or Interesting Foliage
Massive and imposing, the Canary Island date palm is the center of
attention wherever it is planted. Growing up to 60' tall, the thick,
hulking trunk is covered with interesting diamond designs that mark
the point of attachment of the leaves. The massive trunk supports a
huge crown of over 50 huge arching pinnate leaves that may reach 18'
long. These leaves are deep green shading to a yellow stem where the
leaflets are replaced by vicious spines.
In areas of high rainfall, like Florida, these palms are often
seen with ferns growing from among the old leaf stems. Decomposing
leaf litter and other fibrous matter collect there creating an
absorbent compost that sword ferns love, forming a hanging garden
just below the palm's canopy.
The orange dates are formed on drooping, highly branched
infloresences and are very decorative. They are edible but not very
Phoenix canariensis is native to the Canary Islands which are
located in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of northeast Africa.
These stately palms are popular landscape items in near frost-free
climates around the world. They are grown throughout Florida and all
along the Gulf of Mexico coastline. They are planted in warm areas
of the western U.S. including Arizona, California and Las Vegas,
Nevada. Widely used on the French Riviera, this palm provides a
distinctive look to the Mediterranean resorts.
This palm is very slow growing when young. Once the trunk reaches
it's full diameter the growth rate increases. Fertilize in spring
and summer. It is tolerant of most well drained soils. Keep lawn
grasses and mulch away from trunk. Use light, fast draining soilmix
when growing in containers. Young plants are very susceptible to
leaf spot and other fungus infections when grown in humid climates.
I have success treating this condition with Daconil fungicide spray
(follow instructions on container).
Light: Likes a bright, sunny situation.
Moisture: Adult specimens are drought resistant. Water young plants
for healthy look and fastest growth.
Hardiness: USDA Zones 9-11 Frost tolerant. Can survive 28 F without
Propagation: By seeds.
This is NOT a good palm tree for residences unless you have a really
BIG yard - or a Mediterrean style mansion (which they decorate very
nicely!) The huge bulk of the Canary Island palm dwarfs most houses.
This palm is best used along boulevards, on campuses and in parks
and grouped in trios to form focal points in cityscapes. I
particularly like the look of a trio of these palms of different
heights, with their trunks floodlit at night - very dramatic! Small
specimens make great container plants - they look especially nice in
large terra cotta pots. In colder regions they can be over-wintered
indoors in a cool bright location.
If you want to make a dramatic statement use this huge imposing palm
wherever there is space to accomodate it. Small specimens are
inexpensive and readily available and look great in pots on the
patio, near the pool, or in pairs flanking entryways.
Don't place young palms too close to walkways where their sharp leaf
spines might injure passersby.