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Washington Palms are a fast growing and tall landscape palm. The Washington Palm (also known as Mexican Fan Palm) is native to the desert regions of Mexico where it tends to grow near permanent surface or sub-surface water sources. For those in the northern areas of Florida, this palm is very hardy and can withstand several degrees below freezing without appreciable damage. Of the tribe Corypheae, and subfamily Coryphoideae it is also known by the botanic name Washingtonia robusta.
Common Name: Washington Palm
Botanical Name: Washingtonia robusta
Plant Type: Solitary Fan Palm Tree
Zones: 8 - 11
Rate of Growth: Fast
Salt Tolerance: Moderate
Soil Requirements: Widely adaptable
Water Requirements: High drought tolerance
Nutritional Requirements: Moderate
Light Requirements: High
Form: Solitary fan palm, canopy of 30 leaves
Leaves: Costapalmate, induplicate; divided halfway or more into pointed, ribbed, drooping segments with white threads in between on younger plants, bright green in color.
Inflorescence: 8-12' long, produced from among the leaf bases
Pests or diseases: Palmetto weevils, scales, bud rot (when over-watered)
Uses: Specimen plant
Bad Habits: Very spiny petioles are hazardous when mishandled, trunks often covered for years with a long shag of dead leaves which house undesirable critters. Due to its towering height at maturity, these trees often become lightning rods, few of which survive the strike.
Cost: $$ - $$$ -- reasonable to expensive
Propagation: Seed, germinates in 6 weeks to 2 months
Source: Betrock's Guide to Landscape Palms
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Last updated 06/03/08