The Q&A Archives: Pruning Sago Palms

Question: I have a queen (female) sago palm that has outgrown the space it's in. Its overall diameter is about 7 ft and height is about 6 ft with a trunk diameter around 10 in. Will it sprout new growth if I cut the trunk down to about 2 ft?

Answer: The only living bud on that sago palm is the top (terminal) bud. If you cut the top out you could kill the plant. Sometimes they will sprout "pups" around the base. If this happens you could remove the parent by cutting it off and let the young side plants grow in its place. But that would certainly be a tough call.

Large sagos are valuable. Perhaps a landscaper would be willing to dig your sago for use in another job and replace it with a small one. It is worth looking into.

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