The Palm Society--Northern California Chapter

Northern California Chapter
Palm Society
Lakeside Palmetum
Species List
Additional Pages

More places to see palms
Seeds and such

Trachycarpus fortunei
Trachycarpus martianus
Trachycarpus nanus
Trachycarpus Takaghii
Trachycarpus takil
Trachycarpus wagnerianus

Trachycarpus nanus

Common name: Yunnan Dwarf Palm
Native to: China Southwest
Mature height: 3 ft
Mature spread: 3 ft
Growth Habit: solitary
Leaf type: palmate
Trachycarpus nanus

photo by: Dennis Valdez
U. C. Berkeley Botanical Garden


Trachycarpus nanus is, as its name implies, smallest representation of the Trachycarpus. The frond color is often an attractive bluish color when mature. Another interesting feature is the fact that the inflorescences are upright, an adaptation to keep them off the ground. A true botanical scarcity and is threatened with extinction in its natural habitat, with the inflorescences being eaten by goats before they fully bloom. The habitat of origin is Southwest China in Yunnan, where it grows on slopes in company of bushes and tall grasses at approximately 6500 feet altitude. Has a high resistance to cold. Subterranean trunks can be up to 6 feet deep and 2 inches in diameter, but rarely above ground. The fresh kidney shaped seeds should germinate quickly, generally 1 to 2 months after sowing.

see Principes April 1993 Vol. 37, pages 64-72 for more information.

This species in the garden:
Growth rate: very slow
Sunlight: full sun
Water: moderate
Cold Tolerance: 10 F or less
Seed or plant availability: very rare

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© 2004 by the Palm Society, Northern California Chapter