The Q&A Archives: Tropical Plants

Question: I have purchased 2 majesty palms, with the intention of using them around my pool,BUT, the directions say bright indirect light. What kind of palms or tropical plant would do good in bright sunlight?

Answer: What you read is correct - Majesty Palms do best when used as an understory where they will be shaded from hot afternoon sunshine.

Palms which love sunshine include Butia capitata, the pindo palm, (Cocos australis). Native to Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina. Takes frost and extreme heat, sun exposure and hardship of every kind. Grows slowly to 10?20'. Gray-green feather leaves long and graceful ideal as an accent plant. Give extra iron if foliage pales. Hardy to 15 F. Low to moderate water requirement.

Brahea armata, Mexican blue fan palm. Silvery blue fronds. 20?30?, very slow. Good in small gardens. Summer flower clusters 6?20? long. Hardy. 18F.

Chamaerops humilis, dwarf fan palm or Mediterranean fan palm. Slow, multitrunked. Grows faster and larger with feeding and water. Dwarfish in habit and leaf stems armed with sharp spines, drought resistant, heat tolerant, fine palm for specimen plant. Leaves small and abundant. Will attain height of 10?12' at maturity. Some plants sucker freely and form a dense clump, becoming a most handsome tub plant or feature patio plant for pool landscaping. Takes sun or partial shade. Moderate moisture ideal. 18F.

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