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SABAL rosei

Image of Sabal rosei

James H. Schutte

Family

Arecaceae

Botanical Name

SABAL rosei

Plant Common Name

Llanos Palmetto

General Description

Bearing 15 to 30 immense fan-like fronds atop a slender straight trunk, this remarkably cold-hardy Sabal comes from savannas and deciduous forests in western Mexico. It grows slowly into a medium-sized palm.

The arching, green to bluish green, evergreen fronds are divided into 60 or more long, rigid, blade-like segments, that radiate like the spokes of an umbrella. The segments angle upwards, giving the fronds a "folded" appearance. The fronds are borne atop the trunk on long, erect or inclined petioles, forming a rounded crown. A "skirt" of drooping older leaves sometimes fringes the base of the crown. Plants are initially trunkless, developing a trunk after a few years. Trunks of young plants and the upper trunks of older specimens are cross-hatched with the protruding, wedge-shaped petiole bases ("boots") of fallen leaves. Bromeliads and other epiphytic plants sometimes grow in the boots. The petiole bases eventually detach, leaving ring-like scars on the gray trunk. Large, arching clusters of small fragrant ivory flowers appear within the crown in late spring or summer, followed by small rounded fleshy fruits that ripen brown or black. Bees visit the flowers, and birds and other wildlife eat the fruits.

Grow this palm in full sun and well-drained soil. It tolerates dry conditions, but will grow more vigorously with regular irrigation. It tolerates several degrees of frost, succeeding into USDA zone 8. Use singly as a focal point, or group it along streets or in parks.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 7

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    8 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Palm or Cycad

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    20'-50' / 6.1m - 15.2m

  • Width

    12'-20' / 3.7m - 6.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    Mexico

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought, Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Ivory

  • Fruit Color

    Brown, Black

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Blue Green, Olive

  • Bark Color

    Tan, Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Fissured

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Mixed Border, Shade Trees, Street Trees, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes