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COCCOTHRINAX borhidiana

Image of Coccothrinax borhidiana

James Burghardt

Family

Arecaceae

Botanical Name

COCCOTHRINAX borhidiana

Plant Common Name

Borhidis Guano Palm, Guano

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

The tight clusters of stiff, bluish green leaves on the Borhidis guano palm are most beautiful when viewed from above. For that reason alone, it's worthwhile acquiring young plants to enjoy for years in the garden before the trunk elongates. This evergreen palm is native only to the coasts of Cuba, where it is now endangered. It is very slow-growing, and becomes a short single-trunk palm over several decades. Old, dead leaves in the canopy persist, creating a brown petticoat.

The leaves have very short petiole stems, causing the round leaves with stiff pointed segments to look like a yucca from a distance. When viewed from the side, the stiff leaves look like they are tiered in a whorl. Leaf upper sides are deep blue-green or green, with undersides a lighter shade with hints of gray. The summertime flower stalk juts up from the canopy and are filled with tiny ivory blossoms. After pollination, round purplish-black fruits develop.

Grow Borhidis guano palm in full to partial sun in any well-drained, non-clay soil. It is remarkably tolerant of heat, drought and salt spray. Alkaline soils also are not an issue for this palm. It works especially well as a container specimen when small, and then as a component to a mixed succulent or cacti garden or rockery. Plant it outdoors only in regions where frosts do not occur.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • Sunset Zone

    H2, 13, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Palm or Cycad

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    8'-15' / 2.4m - 4.6m

  • Width

    4'-6' / 1.2m - 1.8m

  • Native To

    Caribbean

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Evergreen

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No