The queen palm tree (Syagrus romanzoffiana) is part of the Syagrus genus, and closely resembles the coconut palm. These trees originate in South America, and are abundant all the way from eastern Bolivia to northern Argentina and eastern Brazil. Queen palm trees appear predominantly in subtropical regions of the world.
Queen palm trees are characterized by their straight, smooth trunks that are gray in color. Their trunks have rings in the form of leaf scars, and are topped with plumes that have a feathery look. The fronds of queen palm trees are lacy and a deep green color, with two rows of leaflets. They can grow to be up to 50 feet tall.
Queen palm trees product spherical fruits that are a vibrant orange color. These fruits hang in clusters and become ripe in the winter. Inside of every fruit is one hard seed that has three dark spots.
Queen palm trees require full sun for optimal growth and health. These rapid-growing trees can tolerate various different types of soil. They prefer well-drained soil and can tolerate occasional dampness. Queen palm trees also thrive in acidic soil types. On alkaline soil, these trees will develop extreme mineral deficiencies. This soil damages the palm by preventing and stunting the growth of its new leaves.
Queen palm trees are resistant to the majority of diseases. Proper and regular maintenance and care helps the palm trees resist pests and diseases. However, two possible problems that queen palm trees are susceptible to, are scales and palm leaf skeletonizer. Other possible diseases include fusarium decline, pink rot, Ganoderma butt rot and Texas Phoenix palm decline.
Regular watering (along with proper feeding) is essential for healthy Queen Palm Trees. Queen Palm Trees that are newly planted must be watered on a daily basis during the initial week. For the second week, they must be watered every other day. After that, it is only necessary to water the trees three times a week. The winter months only require watering two times a week.
Queen palm trees need to be fertilized between two and three times annually. This should occur during the spring and summer months. The fertilizer must consist of the following minerals: iron, magnesium, manganese, copper and nitrogen.
Queen palm trees do not need to be pruned frequently. It is best to prune these trees between the months of September and November, however. Pruning requires eliminating old fronds that experienced damage during the summer months. This can be done with the use of a saw. It is important to remove only a small amount of brown or yellow fronds.