Mexican Fan Palm : Washingtonia Robusta
see also Mexican Fan Palm
The Mexican Fan palm is one of the most graceful Florida palm trees. It is used widely for accenting tall building, drives, boulevards, coasts and beaches.
The beautiful Mexican palm is easy recognizable for its “skirt” created of old dry dead leaves, if they are not removed. Without “skirts” the Mexican palm resembles a pole with little bit greenery on the top.
Scientific name: Washingtonia Robusta
Other names: Mexican Washingtonia, Washington Palm
Origin: It is native to Mexico.
Growth rate: Fast
Trunk: The tall, slender, ringed, grey-brown trunk is covered with leaf scars. It sways in wind. Compare to other Washingtonias this one is taller and thinner. It can reach a height of 80-100 feet.
Leaves: The fan shaped, large, green leaves are armed with curved thorns. They grow from one place on the top of the trunk. Compare to the California Fan Palm this tree has a compact canopy. The tree constantly produces new leaves. Old leaves die, and if they are not removed, fall against the trunk and form the “skirt” that goes almost down to the ground. It could be difficult to trim them because of their height, but it is necessary in California where the air is dry and such skirts can cause fire. There is no such a problem in Florida. These palms have been called condominiums for rats, birds, insects and diseases.
Indoor/Outdoor Use: Outdoor
Light exposure: It likes full sun.
Water requirements: Medium or regular water.
Drought toleration: It is a very drought tolerant tree, perfect for desert climates.
Cold toleration: The Mexican fan palm is cold hardy to 15-18 F. It is less hardy than its cousin the California fan palm.
Flowers: It has flowers in June. The large clusters of white flowers several feet long come below the leaves.
Fruits: The fruits are round, black and edible when fresh.
Propagation: It is propagated by seeds. Germination occurs within 2-3 months.
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