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How to Care for a Windmill Palm Tree

Windmill palm trees are best known for their coarse, brown fibrous trunks and wide crown of green leaves. Like other types of palms, windmill palm trees thrive in the warm, sunny climates of the Southern United States. These trees are generally easy to take care of, but since they aren't tolerant of certain conditions, you have to give them special attention. With proper care, your windmill palm tree can survive for several years.

Provide a partially shaded spot for the tree that has well-drained soil. These trees can also survive in full sun, but partial shade is preferable.

Water the soil around the tree every two weeks. Small watering sessions over a two- to three-hour period is better than adding a lot of water at one time. When watering, the soil should be moist but not soggy; too much water may cause root rot.

Fertilize the tree twice per year with a fertilizer made especially for palm trees. Palm tree fertilizers have a slow release that provides a consistent supply of nutrients over the course of several weeks. Follow the application directions on the package for best results.

Prune the fronds off of the tree once they die and turn brown. Be sure to cut at least 6 inches away from the trunk to avoid damage to the tree. If your palm tree is tall, it's best to hire an experienced professional to avoid injuring yourself.

Wrap burlap tightly around the tree if there is a risk of freezing temperatures. Burlap will help protect the tree from the cold temperatures by adding insulation. For best results, wrap at least five layers around the trunk. Remove the burlap once the risk of freezing temperatures passes.


If you live in a dry desert climate, you may need to water the soil once per week.

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