How to Plant Sago Palms from Seed

Overview

The sago palm tree is an extremely slow-growing tree--usually needing about 50 years to reach a height of approximately 10 to 12 feet. Originally from the islands around southern Japan, the sago palm tree is not technically a palm tree. It is a member of the cycad family of plants, which are often referred to as "living fossils." The cycad family of plants were found predominately during the Mesozoic era, over 150 million years ago. Planting sago palm seeds is easy and fun to do, just make sure you wear gloves while preparing the seeds to prevent your hands from being stained.

Preparing Sago Palm Tree Seeds

Step 1

Remove the seeds from a sago palm tree. You can do this from January through March. You will know the seeds are ready to harvest when they are about the size of a walnut and are a bright-orange color.

Step 2

Drop the sago palm seeds into a bucket that contains about 2 inches of water. This is to check the viability of the seeds. Discard any seeds that float, they most likely will not germinate. Discard the water from the bucket.

Step 3

Place the sago palm seeds back into the bucket. Pour approximately 3 inches of water over the seeds. Let the seeds soak in the water for approximately 2 to 3 days, or until the orange skin on each seed is soft. Make sure you change the water in the bucket on a daily basis.

Step 4

Remove the sago palm seeds from the bucket. Remove the skin from each of the seeds.

Step 5

Lay the sago palm seeds out onto a sheet of paper to air dry for two to three days.

Step 6

Place the sago palm seeds into a lidded plastic container. Set the container in a cool location to age the seeds for two to three months, as suggested by Floridata.com. A good temperature range is between 55 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 7

Remove the sago palm seeds from their cool storage location after the allotted time has passed and plant them.

Planting Sago Palm Seeds

Step 1

Fill up 6-inch pots with either coarse sand or a mixture of 50 percent peat moss and 50 percent perlite.

Step 2

Plant one to two sago palm seeds in each 6-inch pot. Each seed should be placed horizontally on top of the soil then pushed about 1/4 inch deep into the soil.

Step 3

Mist the sago palm seeds thoroughly with water. Use a gentle mist from a spray bottle until you are sure the seeds are well-moistened.

Step 4

Place the pots containing the sago palm seeds where there is no direct sunlight, but where there is eight to 10 hours of indirect light every day. Try and keep the temperature warm, about 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The seeds should be kept moist, but never saturated; mist them with water as needed. Germination of sago palm tree seeds will usually begin in about three months.

Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • Gloves
  • Lidded container
  • 6-inch pots
  • Coarse sand (or perlite and peat moss)
  • Spray bottle

References

  • Onalee's Seeds: Growing Sago Palms From Seed
  • Florida Palm Tree: Growing Sago Palm Trees
  • Floridata: Sago Palm Trees
Keywords: planting sago palm, sago palm seeds, propagating palm seeds

About this Author

Katelyn Lynn is a certified holistic health practitioner who specializes in orthomolecular medicine and preventative modalities. She also has extensive experience in botany and horticulture. Lynn has been writing articles for various websites relating to health and wellness since 2007. She has been published on gardenguides.com. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in alternative medicine from Everglades University.