How to Grow a Date Palm


While there are many trees referred to as the date palm, the true date palm is Phoenix dactylifera. The date palm is a multi-stemmed plant that can grow to a height up to 100 feet. The leaves are blue-gray in color grow up to 20 feet in length and 2 feet in width. Phoenix dactylifera is hardy to plant in USDA growing zones 9 through 11 where the winters are mild and there is little chance of freezing.

Step 1

Choose planting location for the date palm that has a minimum of six hours direct sunlight each day. The tree will grow in most soil types, except heavy clay.

Step 2

Dig a planting hole that is slighty wider than the root ball and at a depth where the top of the root system is just at ground level. Remove the palm from the container and gently loosen the roots. Set the tree in the hole and pack the soil in place around the roots.

Step 3

Water the date palm generously after planting to stimulate root growth. Continue to water the tree during the growing season with a drip irrigation method. This will push the water deep into the soil where the roots are growing. The date palm prefers a moist soil, especially during the hot summer months.

Step 4

Fertilize the date palm tree with a palm tree fertilizer in spring and mid-summer. Water the tree well after applying fertilizer to assist with absorption into the roots.

Step 5

Prune dead frond growth from the tree trunk each year in early summer with a pruning saw. Fronds are dried tree trunk growth.

Step 6

Propagate the date palm tree through the collection and planting of seeds from the fruit. It is also possible to propagate by removing and planting suckers that grow around the trunk of a tree that is three to five years old.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Plastic 5 gallon bucket
  • Drill
  • Palm tree fertilizer
  • Tree pruning saw


  • Purdue University: Date
  • FloriData: Phoenix dactylifera
  • Backyard Gardener: Phoenix dactylifera
Keywords: grow date palm, grow phoenix dactylifera, plant date palm

About this Author

Jennifer Loucks has over 10 years of experience as a former technical writer for a software development company in Wisconsin. Her writing experience includes creating software documentation and help documents for clients and staff along with training curriculum. Loucks holds a Bachelor of Science major from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls specializing in animal science and business.