Not just another pretty face, the dramatic areca palm can do double duty as a spectacular tropical privacy screen. The soft, fine-textured fronds of a "Butterfly Palm" - as it's sometimes called - are full and dense. This makes it a favorite for privacy, accents and garden backdrops in many South Florida home landscapes.
You can leave the palm fluffy and full to the ground, or thin it out to see more of the trunks. Either way, this palm makes a great addition to most landscaping as long as it's well placed for its ultimate size.
Areca palms are slow to moderate growers for sun or shade and can reach heights of 15 to 20 feet. They're wider at the top - sometimes 8 to 10 feet or more in diameter - so allow enough room for the palm to grow a tropical canopy over nearby plants. Zone 10 is best, though in warmer areas of Zone 9B that border 10A, you can use an areca in a protected spot. You may see leaf tip burn after most winters, even in Zone 10.
Though these palms are considered self-cleaning, you'll probably want to trim off yellowed or browned fronds occasionally. After winter's chill, the tips of the fronds may be browned. You can go along and shear off just the brown tips, a tedious task but sometimes worth the work involved.
Info Credit: south-florida-plant-guide.com
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