The fan palm - plants, care and wintering

The Content Of The Article:

Washingtonia filifera - California Washington palm

The fan palm is a tree that has its origin location in the hot Mediterranean countries. Its fan-shaped spread ribbed leaves with the silky drooping leaf fibers make this palm an effective room and garden plant. Taking into account the care in the growth and resting phases, it also thrives well in the northern, colder regions.


The Washingtonia robusta and the Washingtonia filifera and the Trachycarpus fortunei belong to the genus of fan palms. Her dark brown bastard stands in pleasant contrast to the rich green, large leaves. The ribbed fronds split at the leaf edges and have long fibers at the rib tips. Some species have strong thorns on the edges of the strong leaf stalks that can cause significant injury to hands and arms. In the southern and subtropical countries, the mature trees reach a height of 10 - 15 meters.

Sowing and soil condition

It propagates by sowing the seeds, which grow well in a mixture of peat and compost with the addition of gravel, sand and lava granules and thrive. The seeds are released in late summer to fall and, with a bit of luck, begin to germinate in the spring of the following year. The substrate should be kept moist only during the germination phase. Waterlogging would make the seedlings rot and all work would be destroyed. If you do not want to bother, buy small ready-grown plants.

Location and temperature

Like almost all palm species, the Washingtonia needs a bright, sunny location. It loves temperatures of 20 - 25° C and tolerates direct sunlight. The fan palm can be brought safely into the summer in the summer. Sufficient sunlight lets them re-inflate in a short time, fresh juicy green, fronds. If the location is too dark, it will shed its lower fronds and waste away. The fan palms are generally considered robust and winterproof.


They can withstand low temperatures down to -8° C for a short time. Despite everything, the fan palm should be well protected against the cold if it is to remain outdoors in winter. Especially young plants do not yet have the necessary long roots that reach the frost-proof area of ​​the earth. The small roots freeze and the palm dies off. In hibernation, the young palm needs less light and can be protected from too low temperatures with a large airy bag and steropur plates if it is to remain outdoors. It is important that the palm heart is protected against winter wetness. Mulching around the trunk on the ground helps keep the ground warm and avoids ground frost. The fronds are tied up with a thin rope. Then the sack is pulled over the leaves to the stem and tied together below. The foam boards are placed around the palm trunk and also tied together. In light frost already helps a bamboo mat around the trunk.
It is important enough air circulation of the leaves, as it evaporates water over the fronds in winter. The potted palm should not be too warm even in winter. The heating air dries out the fronds too much. A water bowl brings a quick remedy here, also promotes the increased humidity growth of the fronds. Even in the winter months, the palm tree prefers bright sunny locations.


Washington robusta - Mexican Washington palm

The repotting of the young trees should be done in early spring, so that the palm can recover at the beginning of the growth phase. The fresh substrate, consisting of peat, the base made of compost, a mixture of gravel and sand in equal parts, lava granules or expanded clay break the plant to lush growth. The old earth bale should not be knocked off but taken over into the new soil, otherwise unnecessary air holes will be created between the roots preventing the absorption of the substance. The new pot should be a few numbers larger than the old, so it has enough development opportunities. Also, make sure that the pot is high, as the roots grow vertically into the soil. When they push out of the upper soil, it is high time to change the bucket.

to water

  • Especially in the growing months, in the spring, the fan palm needs a lot of water.
  • But even here, the dreaded waterlogging, which leads to the decay of the roots, to avoid.
  • The earth should be kept moist. Too much watering infuses nutrients and minerals from the substrate.
  • Natural clay pots provide the plant with sufficient air and water circulation for soil and roots.
  • A humidifier provides the palm in the hot and dry summer months and always green fan.


The fertilization of the fan palm occurs basically from the spring months and ends at the end of the summer. It is a complete fertilizer to use, which supports the palm enough in growth. The plant needs nitrogen in nitrate form to form new shoots and leaves and to form chlorophyll. Phosphorus, in the form of phosphates and phosphoric acid, increases the formation of strong and healthy roots. The plant needs potash for a good stability and growth of fruits and flowers.

To cut

The pruning of the palm trees is to be done in the northern areas basically before the cold periods or immediately thereafter. Only those leaves that are tipped below the horizontal line are pruned, dried out and old, brown fronds. This avoids excessive trimming that would affect the growth of the plant as it absorbs sunlight and moisture through the fronds. The stem of the palm tree must also be freed from the old stumps of the stems, as superfluous moisture and parasites settle in the compartments. Especially when pruning caution is required before the thorns.

Diseases and pests

The palms are often attacked by scale insects, which are easily overlooked due to their good camouflage color. They have a flat, convex chitin shell that makes them rock easily while running. There are several types of scale insects, including the Napfschildläuse, the caparelle, the lice and the lice. They anchor their trunk firmly in the leaves of the host plant and suck out the juice. Her saliva, which they give into the wound site, is poisonous.

Worth knowing about the fan palm soon

Although palm trees usually grow very slowly, the fan palm is one of the species that can grow relatively quickly to stately specimens. It is one of the palm species that can also exude some frost and thus - at least in mild regions - can also be planted entirely outside. The fan palm can also be kept very well in buckets. Care should be taken to plant the palm in a relatively tall pot / bucket, as it forms taproots. Your water requirement is moderate. The root ball should be moist but not wet. In the summer on the terrace, the plant enjoys a sunny and above all warm location, to which one should get used to it slowly.
  • For the first few weeks in freedom, she should therefore rather half shaded and protected.
  • If you want to hibernate the palm indoors, a relatively bright but cool space is suitable.
  • Temperatures around 5-10° C are ideal for wintering.
  • Fan palms, which you have to stand outside over the summer, you should not overwinter in the warm room.
  • Due to the dry heating air, heat but significantly less light than in summer, the fan palm does not survive long despite spraying.
  • If the palm tree remains outside in the bucket in winter, then it should be placed in a sheltered place for the winter.

Video Board: Winter Care - Wrapping A Palm Tree.

© 2019 All Rights Reserved. When Copying Materials - The Reverse Link Is Required | Site Map