Phoenix canariensis the well known ‘Canary Island Date Palm’ is perhaps one of the most familiar sights in the Mediterranean and almost instantly recognizable as a large stately palm. Once grown in huge quantities by Spanish nurseries and sold cheaply almost as a large ‘disposable summer bedding plant’ being exported and sold in cool Northern European countries often in supermarkets amongst the veg and cut flowers, Phoenix canariensis was treated badly. Fortunately a few were planted in mild coastal or warm urban enviroments and to everyones surprise flourised, today it is possible to see many outrageous large specimens growing strongly here in the U.K. Just look at the photo here of the large palm taken on a cool evening in Hackney high street of all places, quite surreal and fabulous. So if you have a mild garden and the space, these are big palms, plant too close to a wall or path at your peril. Give it space and a mild sunny spot then Phoenix canariensis will delight you with magificient stature and fairly rapid growth, much faster than any other feather leaved palm worth a try here.
Fertile free draining soils are best, additional feeds help during the warmer months, we use pelleted poultry manure and liquid seaweed. Obviously the larger the plant the hardier it will be so maybe consider winter protection until it’s too big to handle and please consider where you are planting it allowing plenty of room, lets leave a legacy for our ancestors to see these awesome palms in a hundred years time.
- Position:Full sun and a sheltered position should be wrapped in colder areas.
- Soil:All soils, but avoid waterlogged areas drought tolerant once established.
- Eventual Size:Up to 5 metres in height.
- Habit:Bulbous trunk with arching, dark green foliage.
- Foliage:Evergreen, Bushy.
- Hardiness:Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5).
- Common Names:Canary Island date palm, Canary date palm