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Fragrant flowering palms in pots


greenthumb7
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Does anybody know which palm tree that can be grown in pots that give off fragrant flowers? I thought I read someplace before that there were a few, but I don't remember if those growing outdoors were the only ones with fragrance; or if there are dwarf variety; or even a miniature variety that could be kept in pots indefinitely. Any help, and where to purchase one; or more would be very helpful, and thanks.

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32 minutes ago, greenthumb7 said:

Does anybody know which palm tree that can be grown in pots that give off fragrant flowers? I thought I read someplace before that there were a few, but I don't remember if those growing outdoors were the only ones with fragrance; or if there are dwarf variety; or even a miniature variety that could be kept in pots indefinitely. Any help, and where to purchase one; or more would be very helpful, and thanks.

Arenga engleri have fragrant flowers but don't know of any flowering in a pot.  I believe they get pretty large before they flower and they are clustering palms so they get wide also.

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Jon Sunder

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If your willing to provide much warmth, moisture, and humidity, and eventually move it to a big pot, then a Areca catechu "Dwarf" would be very fragrant, when in bloom. I don't think that you could find any  for sale in Texas, though.

Some Coccothrinax species are also fragrant, and might be easier for you to grow.

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Coccothrinax fragrans is supposed to be fragrant but mine doesn't seem to be.

Hyophorbe verschaffeltii, i.e., spindle palm flowers smell like Juicy Fruit gum.

Meg

Palms of Victory I shall wear

Cape Coral (It's Just Paradise)
Florida
Zone 10A on the Isabelle Canal
Elevation: 15 feet

I'd like to be under the sea in an octopus' garden in the shade.

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5 hours ago, hbernstein said:

I don't think that you could find any  for sale in Texas, though.

Boy that's the truth!  We have to get palms from one coast or the other.  If it weren't for Texas Cold Hardy Palms and a few specialty nurseries we couldn't even find Brahea armata for sale here. 

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Jon Sunder

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Most A. catechu dwarfs come from HI. Even then they are very hard to find. So far none of my dwarfs or semi-dwarf have yet to flower.

Meg

Palms of Victory I shall wear

Cape Coral (It's Just Paradise)
Florida
Zone 10A on the Isabelle Canal
Elevation: 15 feet

I'd like to be under the sea in an octopus' garden in the shade.

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Another genus that has fragrant flowers is Arenga. I don't remember if the smaller A. hookeri is fragrant. Most other Arenga species are waaaay too big for pots!

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Serenoa repens flowers have a very sweet fragrance and are magnets for many types of pollinators.  This palm also flowers at a very young age.

Tampa, Interbay Peninsula, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10A

Bokeelia, Pine Island, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10B

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On 10/23/2021 at 3:42 PM, Fusca said:

Arenga engleri have fragrant flowers but don't know of any flowering in a pot.  I believe they get pretty large before they flower and they are clustering palms so they get wide also.

I thank you for that one, I live in Casa Grande, AZ and I think it's zone 9a  or between zone 8a-9b I'm guessing I'm more in the 9b because a whole lot of palms, and other plants that grows in our Capital of Phoenix is zone 10b, but on the desert zone 10b; although it might be 10a now I think about it. Our capital being we have a Royal Palm growing tall and strong, any idea of the lower end of my growing zone I might be successful growing a Royal Palm on my property? There's one garden center that I know of that has a Royal Palm, or two growing on their property; and they even have some for sale as well too.i was very impressed with the Royal Palm when I was in Lake Worth, FL. I love the cement Grey trunk, and the deep green fronds; with the lighter green new leaf shaft emerging from the top, a very striking tree indeed. I will most definitely be on the lookout for the Arenga engleri. I used to in fact live in Florida (my favorite state) and I've always been very fascinated with the Sabal palms as well noticing how when the fronds coming out from the crown straight out; then it kinda twists around to the side eventually facing downwards; that's one of those curiosities about the Sabal that always intrigued me; and it somewhat reminds me of a three dimensional growth of each frond from the tree; FASCINATING!!! I've seen Sabals growing here with no problems at all. There's one more palm I'm very curious about, if it'll grow here in the desert, it's known as the flame thrower palm, because of its new frond emerging really bright red for several days before reverting to green; a very striking palm. I used to have one as a houseplant when I lived in MN several years ago, but now that I'm here in the desert; I'm wondering if this very striking palm will grow well here? I've also read that it does have a cold tolerance to some degree; and being the part of the desert I'm in; winters aren't too cold here (we've been dubbed "the subtropical desert") so I'm guessing that (Not all) most palms will grow here. There's even an Andes wax palm in the Andes mountains of South America which supposedly grows above the snow line there named Copernica Metroxlon (sorry about the spelling, I'm pretty certain I screwed it up, my apologies to those on here from the Andes region of South America; I'll do better next time) they're feather palms, and I'm wondering how well they'll do here in the Sonoran desert? I think they grow in the cool mountain forests of the Andes if I'm correct, being its been many years I've read about them; and now it's harder to find any info on them. One more thing, I'm wondering about a coquitos palm, I've seen them a lot in the San Francisco, and surrounding areas being they look just like a coconut palm; but these will only grow in cooler zones like San Francisco being they also grow the coquito nut (a very small sized nut, about the size of hazelnut) which is supposed to taste like coconut. Sorry for so much info (as you can tell, I'm a PALM NUT LOL) thank God for this site, and any info would be most appreciated, have a great weekend; and I'll wait for the responses. 

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@greenthumb7 I think that you have lots of options for palms in your area with summers/sun being the obvious challenge.  I can say that royal palms (Roystonea) can do well there as there's a few Arizona members in your area growing them.  @aztropic would have some good advice for what grows well there.  I can say that the Andean Wax Palm (Ceroxylon quindiuense)  need cool nights in summer and probably won't do well unless you're at a high elevation.  Coquito (Jubaea chilensis) should do well.   Also flamethrowers (Chambeyronia sp.) will likely require a lot of shade and Arenga engleri likes a lot of water - especially challenging in a container there - but can probably do OK in shade.

Jon Sunder

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Thanks AZT, much obliged to you, the community I live in used to be farmland at one time, but once urbanized, agriculture ceased, but from what I've been hearing the soil beneath the hard pan is still pretty decent for growing things. I feel kinda foolish, being the climate I live in (being I love growing plants in general) palms are my most favorite plants to grow. I'm growing a Phoenix date palm, but not sure of the type of Phoenix I have, or if it's male or female. It's in a 14 inch pot as of this past March this year, and still looking good. I've also forgotten to mention (it seems the more I find out, the more new things keeps coming up) it'll be nice to find all of the palms that grows edible fruits; that carries both male and female flowers that could even just get by growing here; or those that'll thrive here (but still producing edible fruit) I guess the Acai palm is out of the question, being it requires tropical conditions (although we have everything weathwrwise, except no humidity; with the exception of being (almost) like the mildest areas of Florida; if it wasn't for lack of humidity) I've heard there's a peach palm (are the trunks and fronds very thorny? Bactris, if I've spelled that correctly) I've always wanted to see how many palms with edible fruits (including Royal, bismaarck; and other very focal palms to grow) I could get away to growing here in the desert, as well as palms unheard of that'll grow just as well here in desert climates; and thanks a bunch. Don't mean to keep coming up with more questions; but this is so fascinating. 

 

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31 minutes ago, greenthumb7 said:

Thanks AZT, much obliged to you, the community I live in used to be farmland at one time, but once urbanized, agriculture ceased, but from what I've been hearing the soil beneath the hard pan is still pretty decent for growing things. I feel kinda foolish, being the climate I live in (being I love growing plants in general) palms are my most favorite plants to grow. I'm growing a Phoenix date palm, but not sure of the type of Phoenix I have, or if it's male or female. It's in a 14 inch pot as of this past March this year, and still looking good. I've also forgotten to mention (it seems the more I find out, the more new things keeps coming up) it'll be nice to find all of the palms that grows edible fruits; that carries both male and female flowers that could even just get by growing here; or those that'll thrive here (but still producing edible fruit) I guess the Acai palm is out of the question, being it requires tropical conditions (although we have everything weathwrwise, except no humidity; with the exception of being (almost) like the mildest areas of Florida; if it wasn't for lack of humidity) I've heard there's a peach palm (are the trunks and fronds very thorny? Bactris, if I've spelled that correctly) I've always wanted to see how many palms with edible fruits (including Royal, bismaarck; and other very focal palms to grow) I could get away to growing here in the desert, as well as palms unheard of that'll grow just as well here in desert climates; and thanks a bunch. Don't mean to keep coming up with more questions; but this is so fascinating. 

 

Welcome to the forum Greenthumb7,

As @Fusca  mentions, you should have plenty of choices here.. With the exception of the really humidity- loving tropical ..or high elevation stuff that  likes it much cooler than it will ever be out here.. 

Depending on your lot size, you could use various native and regionally native trees / shrubs ( those that produce edible fruit esp. ) to create " rooms " for planting out palms that will need more shade, ( summer esp. ) higher humidity, and/ or overhead protection in the winter ( In Chandler myself ..for the time being..  Know overnight lows in Casa Grande can be a few deg. lower than i can a few times each winter )

Sabal, Brahea, Washingtonia, and Phoenix would be your " staple " palms for sun for sure.. Bismarckia should also do fine, esp once bigger ( may burn a bit in a cold winter ..perhaps a little more often when small ) Have heard seed of Washingtonia ( would only grow pure filifera myself ) were edible.. used to make some sort of Flour. Brahea edulis, which might do best w/ some afternoon shade here,  also produces edible fruit..  Have heard seeds of B. armata might be use-able ( after roasting ) but would do some research / speak w/ others about that before sampling / trialing.

Hyphaene are another group of desert- adapted palms that contain species ( at least 1.. maybe others? ) that produce edible fruit. Might be slightly cold sensitive there in C.G. though, esp. when young.

Peach Palm ( Bactris ) is definitely thorny / spine covered, though there there may be a spineless / near spineless form in cultivation..    Agrenga engleri will be hardier,  but yes.. give them shade, ..and regular water.   Know of only one i have seen flowering in a container ( was an OLD, root bound specimen in a 40+ gal. at a nursery i'd worked for in FL. )  Have two seedlings in 3 gal.. Slow, ( but steady ) grower ..and i abuse mine a bit more than others might, haha. Once they reach that age, flowers are extremely fragrant. AFAIA, Fruit aren't edible ( contain lots of Oxalic Acid / crystals = will burn the inside of your mouth / throat, etc )

As mentioned, Scott ( AZ Tropic ) should be able to recommend a whole bunch of other species you can research. Lots of great threads he has posted through the years regarding the more unusual palm choices that work here to gain insight from..
 

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Appreciate the listing you gave me, the only problem I have at the moment is little no no shading on my property, over by the house, but too close to the home planting anything, being the growth would be too cramped; (I think Ives read that roots to palm trees goes straight down, and doesn't usually create any harm to water/septic pipes/tanks; but perhaps I could be wrong.  The front of my house is shaded during the morning hours until about noonish, to about one or so until evening; then my back yard becomes shaded about two, or two thirty, but but 3 to close to 5 hours of light in my back yard might not be enough light; but then again it gets the first light of day until early to mid afternoon.  So many variables whew!!! I'm wonder if the gingerbread palm would grow well here? I've read it grows in the deserts of Africa; and the fruit tastes somewhat of gingerbread; hence it's nickname lol. It also clumps in growth, and one of the few palms where when you cut of the top growth, it'll resprout; or something to that nature  (if I've read that correctly) being iff that's the case, than this is one palm that doesn't know when to quit growing. For those of us that love palm trees, this'll be a must have palm; in case of growing hazards such as pests and/or just wanting to restructure the palm to grow however you want it to grow. Any info on this palm would be mostly appreciated; being it may be another great choice for us he in the Sonoran desert. Thanks again, and we'll be in touch. 

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