Phoenix canariensis – Canary Island Date Palm
This evergreen reaches heights of forty to sixty feet with a spread of twenty to forty feet. It is a slow-growing palm with feathery fronds that are fifteen to twenty feet long. The leaves arch at the top of the plant and are dark green and armed with sharp spines. The Canary Island palm has a stout trunk that resembles a pineapple and is covered with diamond-shaped leaf scars. The flowers are small and creamy white and appear on six-foot long stalks. After flowering, the female tree forms a round mass of orange fruit in the fall.
The fruit, while inedible, is showy but can create a litter problem. This palm likes full sun, lots of heat, and deep, infrequent, watering. It also prefers well-draining, fertile soil. It is hardy to about twenty degrees Fahrenheit and does not recover quickly after a frost. Use it as a backdrop around pools or with other tropical plants and as a skyline tree along roadsides. It can also be used in large campuses and wide-open spaces for an oasis or Mediterranean effect. Also use in parks or as a specimen against tall buildings. This palm will make a dramatic statement in any large space that can accommodate it and looks interesting when planted in groupings. It is a native of the Canary Islands, located in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Northeast Africa.