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Paurotis Palm

Acoelorrhaphe wrightii

Cold hardy


The Paurotis Palm is sometimes called an "Everglades Palm" because it's a native Florida palm that grows in the Everglades in dense stands. 


The Paurotis is a clumping style palm and lends itself well to planting between windows, on the corner of a home, or massed together as a tall hedge.  The tall, slender trunks retain leaf bases and fiber, for a soft crusted look that complements its bright green fan-shaped leaves.  Kept well-trimmed, this palm can look spectacular with nightime uplighting.




The Paurotis Palm is an easy-care palm, cold hardy throughout South Florida including Zone 9B.  This palm can actually tolerate cold down to 30 degrees F.  It works in USDA Zones 10a (30 to 35 degrees F) to Zone 11 (above 40 degrees F).


Paurotis Palms grow relatively slowly in sun to part shade, but prefer full sun.  They can eventually reach a height of 25 to feet tall and 5 to 10 ft wide.


The Paurotis is a moderately salt-tolerant palm.  It will tolerate brackish water or occasional inundation by salt water.  It has a moderate salt spray tolerance and can grow near salt water if protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.


The Paurotis Palm spreads to form a large cluster, so plant in a spot where eventual spreading will not be restricted (edged by sidewalk, patio, house).




For optimal growth a rich organic soil is recommended.


Even though these are native palms for South Florida, fertilization is necessary for the paurotis's health and good looks.  If the frond color becomes yellowish it is probably lacking potassium, iron, manganese, and magnesium.  Fertilize twice a year during the growing season with a slow release fertilizer that contains micro-nutrients. 


Trim off browned fronds for a cleaner look. You can cut off emerging shoots at ground level to keep the palm's width in check, but leave some for a prettier, more ornamental look.


Though the Paurotis grows wild in the Everglades it actually doesn't handle extremely swampy conditions well. It needs moist well-drained soil, and though it is moderately drought-tolerant, it prefers a regular watering.




Because this is a clustering palm with some height locate 4 feet (or more) from a house to keep it away from eaves and roof lines. If planting along a fence it can be planted as close as 3 feet out.


Plant 3 or more feet apart if you're using Paurotis Palms for screening or to grow in a row.


Landscaping with Paurotis Palms


*  use as a "hedge" along the property line

*  use to accent the corner of a house 

*  use to add interest along a blank wall

*  for a stand-alone specimen for the yard

*  as a tall, tropical backdrop for other lower plants

*  use as a privacy screen for pool or patio areas

*  for an architectural accent plant near the entry


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