As watering exotic plants, (including our gorgeous selection of water-hungry Southeast Asian palms), becomes a luxury practice that more and more homeowners cannot or will not continue, our sights turn towards native plants!
Florida's native Coccothrinax argentata, or Silver Palm, can sometimes be found growing with its roots wedged within cranks on limestone outcroppings, or its trunks blackened by Everglades' brush fires: that's durability and hardiness, palm lovers! This species which is native to Florida, Hispaniola, and the Bahama Islands can be neglected (although care is always likely to produce a "lusher" palm), and will STILL be a dependable landscaping specimen palm, in Zones 10, and 11!
Its attributes that have won it Palm of the Month kudos, are the following:
1. salt tolerance is high (great for seaside planting!)
2. very high drought tolerance (good for xeriscaping!!)
3. tolerant of numerous soil compositions!
4. moderate light requirements (light shade is "OK!")
5. no feed for a regular palm feeding program (survives on its own)
6. small size is easy to maintain, and is "just right" for the average homeowners' lots!
7. NO PEST PROBLEMS.
8. Perfect for specimen use in a tropical-looking garden bed!
9. No irritants to humans (including spines or barbs!!)
This is a palm of grace, form and admirable stature! It is an "ideal" palm for an exotic "Florida or Caribbean Look" without the copious amounts of watering, and/or fertilisation, that Southeast Asian palm specimens often truly demand! In this new Millenium, supplemental watering will most likely be banned, or certainly, severely restricted. "The Silver Palm" serves our needs well in these times of limited water resources, in many of the palm-growing regions of the world, including the Caribbean, Florida, and Queensland Australia!