Needle Palm Tree

Rhapidophyllum hystrix

Cold-hardy, pest and disease resistant, slow-growing, low-maintenance, year-round greenery, drought-tolerant but also thrives in occasionally wetter soils, making native Needle Palms the perfect addition to add a punch of the tropics to northern landscapes. This attractive palm ticks all the boxes for thriving in colder climates without much care and not skipping a beat in healthy growth. What’s not to love?

  • Cold-hardy to -5 degrees, slow-growing, shorter palm with spreading and clumping habit that’s native to Georgia.
  • Glossy green and silver fan-shaped fronds atop multiple short, stubby, fibrous wrapped trunks, which adds additional protection during winter.
  • Drought-tolerant, thrives in sun and shade, as well as occasionally wet soils.

Size: 7 Gallon (2' tall)
Price:
Sale price$71.30
Deer Resistant Deer Resistant
Drought Tolerant Drought Tolerant
Cold Hardy Cold Hardy
Hardy Zone: 5-11
Cold Hardy: Yes
Mature Height: 6-8'
Spread: 6-8'
Shape: Shrub
Growth Rate: Slow
Sun Preference: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Maintenance: Easy
Water Needs: Average
Soil Preference: Well Drained
Drought Tolerant: Yes
Deer Resistant: Yes

Multi-Trunked, Cold-Hardy Palm Tree that’s a Georgia native and withstands temps down to -5 degrees, slow-growing, stays lower in height and spreads out.

Why Choose a Needle Palm?

If you’ve always desired to have a bit of your own tropical oasis but feel your climate is too cold – meet the Needle Palm. Needle Palms won’t even flinch when Old Man Winter comes calling bearing gifts of freezes and frosts. Where many types of palms will wither and die in colder temperatures, Needle Palms continue producing healthy growth and good looks even in winter’s cold. 

The palm has a clumping habit, slowly reaching a mature height of up to 8 feet and 4 to 8 feet wide. The large, 30 inches long, fan-shaped fronds are glossy dark green on top and silvery on the undersides. Adding to their beauty, the fronds are split into 20 inches long, deeply divided segments. The short, stubby trunks are wrapped in brown fiber.

Needle palms make eye-catching specimens, accent plants, ground covers, and even perform well in containers. Their low-maintenance and problem-free qualities make them great choices for novice or lazy gardeners. 

Is it Cold-Hardy in My Area?

Needle Palms hold the distinction of being one of the hardiest palms, including cold hardiness. They grow well planted outdoors in hardiness zones 5 through 11. These palms are known to withstand winter lows of -5°F. 

For the most protection, plant your Needle Palm in an area out of the direct effect of strong winter winds. 

Of course, if you are expecting an especially brutal cold snap, it’s best to add a little protection to your Needle Palm. Water the palm deeply before the cold weather arrives, which helps insulate the root system keeping it warm. You should also apply a thick layer of mulch over the planting site, which also helps keep the root system warm. 

Stringing some holiday lights through the canopy not only keeps it warm but adds a bit of a cheery appeal to the area. 

How Big Does It Get?

The slow-grower has a clumping habit and usually grows as wide as it’s growing tall. Needle Palms mature to around 6 to 8 feet tall and 4 to 8 feet wide. This makes them good choices for landscapes smaller in size or smaller areas within the landscape. 

How Much Sun Does It Require?

Another bonus about Needle Palms is that it tolerates growing in full sun to partial shade. If your location is hot and dry, especially during summer, the palm will appreciate a location where it receives some shade during the hottest portion of the afternoon.

What About Soil and Water?

Needle Palms grow naturally as understory plants in wet woodland areas, so it tolerates soils that are occasionally wet. However, it will thrive in well-drained soils that are rich in organic nutrients. 

Although drought-tolerant once established, water newly planted palms several times weekly for the first couple of months while it establishes itself. Thereafter, you can water weekly. However, the palm is very forgiving if you forget to irrigate. 

Is It Easy to Maintain?

You can’t ask for an easier tree to maintain than the Needle Palm. It holds its green fronds longer than the vast majority of palms. This means you might not have to prune off a dead frond other than every couple of years. However, when you do prune wear gloves because of the long, needle-like, blackthorns located at the frond’s base, from which the palm get’s its common name. 

If you’re searching for a mess-free, low-maintenance plant then the Needle Palm is right for you. Even pests and diseases don’t pose a problem. 

What About Fertilizing?

Another bonus about Needle Palms is they aren’t big feeders. You can feed them in early spring and again in summer with a general-purpose blend specific to palms. Always follow label directions on amounts and water in well after applying. 

Q: Do you deliver?
A: Yes, we deliver within a 30 mile radius of our Alpharetta, GA location. Click here to check your zip code. The cost for delivery is $65. For potential delivery beyond 30 miles, please call us at 770-400-9897.  

Q: Do you install? 
A: Yes, all the plants we sell can be installed by us. Installation cost varies by product. Once you place your products in the cart, it will display delivery and installation costs. We only install AtlantaPalms.com palm trees and plants. Installation requires delivery by us. 

Q: Do you offer a warranty?
A: Yes, we guarantee that your palm tree will arrive in perfect condition. If you're not satisfied within the first five (5) days of receiving your trees and plants, give us a call at 770-400-9897 so that we can make things right. 

If you have issues with your trees or plants within the first 30 days, give us a call. We will review your concerns and provide you with a one-time replacement if necessary. Replacement delivery and installation costs are at the customer’s expense.

Please note, palm trees need proper care. If you have provided less than optimal care, your purchase isn't covered by our guarantee.

Q: Do you accept returns?
A: Only palms and plants 15 Gallon or less can be returned. The plant must be returned within 2 days of pickup or delivery and must be in the original container. Once a tree has been removed from its original container, or has been planted, it cannot be returned. Delivery fees are non-refundable.

Q: What payment methods do you accept?
A: We accept all major credit cards and cash.

Q: What are your hours of operation?
Monday - Friday I  8:30 am to 5 pm
Saturday I 8:30 am to 12 pm
Sunday I Closed

APRIL 1st - JUNE 15th I We are open 7 days a week from  8:30 am to 5 pm

Q: How often should I water my palms?
A: In general, palms should be watered daily with 4 to 5 gallons of water for the first two weeks until the root system is established. Ensure that the soil is wet and not soggy. Too much water may cause permanent damage. Depending on the type of palm and time of year, watering may be decreased to twice a month or less once the tree is established. Make sure you water the trees from the bottom up. Watering from the top down can cause rotting. Soil that has good drainage is important to help prevent over saturation and adding sand to the soil mixture can help with drainage. Placing mulch around the base of the tree and not against the trunk can also help with retaining water. 

For cold hardy palms, watering will vary depending on the time of year and the temperature. Here is a guideline for how much to water in any given season.

Winter (60 degrees of less) no need to water, except for the first 30 days after installation. (5 gallons or till mote is full)

Spring (75 degrees or less) water palm once a week. (5 gallons or till mote is full)

Beginning of summer (90 degrees or less) 2-3 times a week

Heat of summer (90 degrees and above) 4-5 times a week

Q: When do I apply fertilizer to my palm tree?
A: Newly planted palms should not be fertilized until they put out a new spear. For palms planted from the Georgia/Tennessee border down to Atlanta, apply fertilizer in three applications. In heavy clay soils use half the recommended amount of fertilizer, and do not apply granular fertilizers after August 1. Be sure to fertilize only during the growing season (between April 1 and August 1). 

Q: It is a good idea to correctly support larger, newly planted palms?
A: Larger palms will require some form of bracing to maintain stability during the first six to eight months after installation. Three equidistantly-spaced braces are used to support the palm. If Atlanta Palms installs your palm tree, we handle the bracing. 

Q: When should I prune my palm tree?
A: The only time you should prune your palm tree is when the fronds are discolored, broken or pointing to the ground at more than a 90 degree angle. Palms get most of their energy from their fronds, so it’s important to be careful not to remove too many. 

Q: Why are drip irrigation systems preferable to sprinklers?
A: Both drip irrigation and sprinklers are good irrigation systems for your palm trees. Drip irrigation is designed to have deeper saturation into a specific area. Sprinklers (spray irrigation) will only saturate the top 3-5 inches per watering cycle whereas Palms root balls are 2-3 feet deep and require a deeper water saturation to develop new roots. Newly planted palms can suffer root loss with a lapse in deep water saturation especially during the hotter and drier summer months.

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