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Ruffled Fan Palm


The Ruffled fan palm is hard to miss in any location.

It’s a super choice for containers indoors or out and in landscapes.

This one is sure to attract some attention.

It is native to the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu, another island in the Pacific.

Ruffled Fan Palm Tree Leaf- Licuala GrandisRuffled Fan Palm Tree Leaf- Licuala Grandis

Appearance

Its gorgeous corrugated green leaves are the main attraction of this tropical specimen.

There are some palms in the same branch of the family with larger leaves that are similar.

This palm’s leaves are about 3 feet across... plenty big enough especially if indoors.

There are a couple of it’s relatives that get leaves up to 6 feet across.

The ruffled fan palm stays on the smaller side getting to be about 10-12 feet tall in landscapes. They get taller in the wild, up to 20 feet.


They grow on a single trunk that is only a couple of inches thick and beige to gray in color.

There is brown fuzz covering of fibers on the upper part of the trunk while the lower older sections appear grayer with no real fibers attached.

They will get short sprays of yellow flowers that will produce a red-almost burgundy color fruit when ripe. Another small added attraction to contrast with the grassy green leaves.

CC  Original Photo: Kurt Stueber

Ruffled Fan Palm Tree with Fruit -Licuala GrandisRuffled Fan Palm Tree with Fruit -Licuala Grandis

Care and Growth of Ruffled Fan Palms

Ruffled Fan Palm Tree- Liculala GrandisRuffled Fan Palm Tree- Liculala Grandis

The leaves are heavily corrugated giving them a pleated sort of look. They are actually solid and not divided at all.

Best to place these beauties in spot protected from the wind that will shred the leaves.

They look a little stringy or funny planted out on their own.

The trunks being so small in diameter and the leaves so big- it looks a bit top heavy.

The best display is with a ground cover planted around the base.

This way the full fan leaves can be appreciated without having to notice it’s seemingly stick looking trunk.

It will also work to accent it nicely if planted in a container.

Quick info:  Scientific name    Licuala grandis

  • 10-12 ft tall, 6-8 feet wide (taller in nature) single trunk
  • Minimum temp 32°F    10-11 zones
  • Part sun to part shade, growth rate on the slow side
  • Soil on the acid side and should contain humus for moisture retention
Ruffled Fan Palm Tree - Medium

The beautiful ruffled leaf palm requires regular water and feeding with a quality palm fertilizer to keep it looking its best.

Consider moving it inside if there’s even a chance of frost. It doesn’t tolerant the cold temps well.

If you do move it indoors you’ll have to give it a regular mist bath as thrives in higher humidity.

It may not be wise to have this palm in arid or dry conditions. It does much better with moisture in the soil and in the air.

Any leaves that are more brown the yellow should be removed to keep the tree presentable.

Be careful there are a few thorns on the base of the leaf stalk.

Making a spot in your little slice of paradise for the ruffled fan palm will definitely give you the tropical feel you are looking for.

A Young Ruffled Fan Palm Tree- Licuala GrandisA Young Ruffled Fan Palm Tree- Licuala Grandis

Explore more Palms

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  • Triangle Palm

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  • Travelers Palm

    The travelers palm would make a great addition and will turn any yard into a little slice of paradise! Many call it a fan palm because of the leaf pattern.

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