Livistona Chinensis is called Chinese Fan Palm and is part of the Arecaceae Family. The Chinese fan palm is native to southern Japan, Taiwan and several islands in the South China Sea. This palm is becoming increasingly popular for use in landscapes in Florida, California and other warm temperate climates.
Immature specimens of this fan palm are as attractive as the mature plants. It is becoming common to see young Chinese fan palms used in masses as ground cover in both outdoor landscapes and interiors capes - especially in shopping malls. This Livistona can grow to 50 ft in its native habitat but is more commonly seen at heights of 25 ft (6 m) and 16-10 ft in diameter (2-3 m). The Chinese Fan Palm has a very slow growth rate and remains trunk less for a long time, that’s why it can be used as a large shrub form.
This is not to say that mature specimens are unattractive, just the opposite. The glossy, large, lustrous emerald-green weeping leaves are deeply divided into about 75 segments that droop downward to give a gracefully fountain-like aspect (inspiring its common name Chinese fountain palm). The leaf petioles are edged with brown spiny teeth. These leaves may grow up to 3 to 6 feet (2 to 3.5 m) and form a dense canopy on a solitary brown trunk (bleaching to gray on older specimens). Trunks grow to about 18"(45.72 cm) in diameter and are wider at the base and closely ringed with leaf scars.
Flowers are borne on 6' (1.8 m) yellow-cream inflorescences hidden within the crown and are followed by large bunches of oval or round green fruits about 1 in long (2-3 cm) that turn blue to blue-gray when ripe. The fruit sets mostly bisexually, so one trees fruits are probably all fertile, and sprout very readily! This is a nice "bonus" as your Chinese Fan Palm reaches the age of about 5-7 years.
Hardiness Zones :
9-11 (-5c/25f, 4c/40f) Livistona Chinensis can withstand moderate frosts to 20 degrees F or less. This tree is a wonderful container plant, also perfect for smaller yards. It prefers a sunny, moist position, but it’s a tough, easy to grow palm, tolerant of a wide range of conditions. Chinese fan palm is not particular about soil. Fertilize twice a year in spring and summer with a good quality slow release fertilizer that contains micro-nutrients. Young plants look better when grown in part shade. This palm forms a long tap root and can survive extended periods of drought. Provide adequate moisture for more rapid growth. They are tough enough to survive hot city conditions and can be used in median plantings and along freeways with limited care.