Cold-Tolerant Shorter Palm Tree that’s native to Georgia and withstands temperatures down to zero. It is a slow growing clumping palm that thrives with basic care.
Why Choose a Dwarf Palmetto Palm?
Although not as large as many varieties of palms, Dwarf Palmetto Palms bring robust attractiveness wherever utilized in the landscape. They are cold-hardy down to 5° but can also tolerate short drops to 0°F, making them the perfect addition to northern landscapes and gardeners that always wanted a palm but felt their environment was too cold.
These slow-growers have a clumping habit, maturing to around 2 to 6 feet tall and 3 to 5 feet wide in USDA zone 7a-8. The round, bluish-green, fan-like fronds are divided into segments and attached to smooth stems growing up to 5 feet tall. It typically forms multiple trunks but can be trained into a single trunk specimen. White flower stalks bloom in summer followed by small blackberries.
The Dwarf Palmetto’s shrubby form and large fronds make it stand out as an accent plant or specimen. It also works well planted as a group or screening plant to cover fences or pool equipment. This plant is also beautiful as a standalone palm as well as under the canopy of larger palms or trees.
Is it Cold-Hardy in My Area?
If you’re looking for an elegant palm that is cold-hardy and sturdy, then the Dwarf Palmetto may be the palm for you. This Georgia native withstands temperatures down to 5° F and will even tolerate short bouts of drops to 0°F. These trees grow well throughout USDA hardiness zones 7a through 11.
In the event of an extreme freeze, water the palm deeply the day before the expected cold weather is to arrive to insulate the roots and help keep them warm. Add a thick layer of mulch over the planting site to also help insulate the roots.
You can even string some holiday lights through the canopy. This not only helps keep the Dwarf Palmetto Palm warm but also brings a cheery appeal to the area at night.
How Big Does It Get?
Although not big in size, the Dwarf Palmetto Palm is big in its good looks. The slow-grower grows approximately 5" a year and matures anywhere from 2 to 6 feet tall with a width of around 3 to 5 feet in USDA zones 7a-8. This makes it a good choice for smaller landscapes.
How Much Sun Does It Require?
Dwarf Palmettos are versatile when it comes to their light tolerance. The palm grows well located in full sun to partial shade. If your area is extremely hot and dry throughout summer, the palm will appreciate a site that receives some shade during the hottest portion of the afternoon.
What About Soil and Water Requirements?
Another quality about Dwarf Palmetto Palms is they tolerate a wide range of soils from well-drained to those that are occasionally wet. However, well-drained soils that are fertile produce the best growth.
Newly planted palms should be watered several times weekly for a couple of months while they establish themselves in the planting site. Dwarf Palmetto Palms are drought-tolerant once established and weekly to every other week water applications are sufficient. The palm won’t punish you if you forget to water.
Is It Easy to Maintain?
If you don’t want to spend hours tending fussy plants then the Dwarf Palmetto is the plant for you. It also won’t be creating a mess, as it’s relatively maintenance-free and doesn’t suffer pest or disease problems.
Its compact size makes pruning this palm an easy task. You only need to prune the completely brown fronds. Watch out for pruning them off too early as the palm is still gaining nutrients from fronds that contain even just a bit of green.
Although palms are relatively easy to care for yourself, we encourage our professional maintenance service 3 times a year. We offer the Perfect Palm Maintenance Service with only the best products and professionals for your palms.
What About Fertilizing?
Dwarf Palmetto isn’t a big feeder and in fact, once established they don’t need feeding at all to grow healthily. However, you can feed them with a slow-release fertilizer specific to palms two to four times yearly. Follow package directions on amounts and always water in well after applying.
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