Tropical Palms

Sago Palm

Landscape Significance

Due to its tropical appearance, the Sago Palm is excellent for a specimen accent.

Sago Palm (Cycas revoluta)
This photo was taken on Fort Sumter Drive, James Island, SC. 

The Sago Palm is not a true palm, but is a cycad.  It is not suitable for upper South Carolina due to limited cold tolerance.  Male and female flowers are borne on different plants.

It is very slow growing and long lived in both sun and shade. It will eventually reach a mature height of 10 feet. Diseases that may affect palms and cycads include fungal leaf spots and root rots. Scale insects and mealybugs commonly attack cycads.

Identifying characteristics

Stiff 3 to 4 foot fronds  radiate outward from a non-branched trunk. Leaflets are glossy green and arranged like a feather. A cylindrical cone grows only in the center of the male plant, where the female plant produces a round mass consisting of modified scale-like leaves that produces orange-red seeds to two inches in diameter.

More information on palms and cycads is available at the Clemson Home & Garden Informaton Center: Clemson HGIC - Sago Palm


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