How to Plant a Date Palm Tree Seed

Overview

The date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) is a tropical tree that can reach a height of up to 82 feet. The palm is typically grown in USDA hardiness zones 8 through 11. It's popular as an architectural plant and is often planted in rows along pathways or bordering properties. Though you can buy started date palm trees from nurseries, growing date palm trees from the palm's seed is cheaper.

Step 1

Insert a knife into the date palm fruit until you feel it bump against the seed inside. Cut around the seed and remove the fruit to pop the seed out.

Step 2

Place the seed into a bowl or container and add enough water to cover the seed. Soak the seed for 24 to 48 hours. Remove the seed when its time is up and rinse it under fast-running water to remove any pieces of fruit that are still clinging to it.

Step 3

Fill a sealable container with two cups of vermiculite, available at most garden stores and nurseries. Sink the palm seed into the vermiculite and add 2 to 3 tbsp. of water to moisten the substrate material.

Step 4

Seal the container and keep it in a warm, dark area with an average temperature of 90 degrees F. For example, put the container on top of a water heater or near a radiator.

Step 5

Check the date palm seed daily until you notice a root emerging from the seed. Germination can take up to three months. When the seed has grown a root, carefully transplant it to a gallon-sized plant pot filled with an inch of gravel and topped off with soilless potting mix. Bury the seed 1/2 an inch below the surface of the potting mix and water daily to keep it moist--within a few weeks, a palm seedling will appear.

Tips and Warnings

  • Adding too much water to the vermiculite can cause the date palm seed to begin to rot before it has germinated.

Things You'll Need

  • Date palm fruit
  • Knife
  • Bowl
  • Sealable container
  • Vermiculite
  • Gallon-sized pot
  • Gravel
  • Soilless potting mix

References

  • "Growing Palm Trees"; David Leaser; 2007
  • "Palms and Cycads: A Complete Guide to Selecting, Growing and Propagating"; David Squire; 2007
Keywords: sprout date palm seed, grow date palm, start date palm

About this Author

Josh Duvauchelle is an editor and journalist with more than 10 years' experience. His work has appeared in various magazines, including "Honolulu Magazine," which has more paid subscribers than any other magazine in Hawaii. He graduated with honors from Trinity Western University, holding a Bachelor of Arts in professional communications, and earned a certificate in applied leadership and public affairs from the Laurentian Leadership Centre.