The Q&A Archives: Transplanting Mexican Fan Palms

Question: All of our neighbors have some form of Palms growing in their backyards that are 12' and above. Hence, when that time of year comes about that seed pods show up on their trees, within a few months or so our back-yard area, (gravel covered area around our pool), has become littered with enough seeds to give us TONS of free new little palms. Unfortunately, the little boogers never spring up where we want them so we transplant them. (This has been going on for years now!) And of course, they have always died. It kills me that they will grow freely when we don't water them; don't fertilize them; don't do anything to them in plain old Arizona caliche soil. But transplant them and they die. Help!
(This entire area receives full sun)

So my questions would run like this:
1. What kind of soil preparation do we need to do OR NOT do to ensure successful transplanting?
2. Mulch and/or fertilizer recommendation at the time we transplant AND for down-the-road.
3. Since these are supposed to be fairly drought resistant trees, how much water do we need to give them while they are

Answer: I suggest you download a free publication entitled "Arizona Landscape Palms" from the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension. It contains details on maintenance as well as species. Go to the website at

Under Ornamentals, choose AZ1021, Palms: Arizona Landscape Palms. If you have further questions after reading it, feel free to send another question to the website.

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