The Philippines native Christmas palm (adonidia) gets its name from the bright scarlet fruit clusters it produces in the winter. This self-cleaning palm is typically slender and small, normally 15–25 feet tall, which makes it an excellent choice to be planted in groups to produce a natural-looking grove. Its feather-shaped fronds are arched and glossy and prefer full sun to partial shade in moist but well-drained soil. While not frost-tolerant, the Christmas palm can survive short periods of cold temperatures down to 30 degrees. It can also tolerate mild sea spray.

These palms are susceptible to Lethal Yellowing; however, a preventive inoculation can be administered before the plant contracts the disease. A few fungal diseases are also of concern, but for the most part, taking care of your Christmas palm is a piece of cake, which is why it’s so popular in our warm, Southwest Florida climate. Many gardeners consider the fruit a debris nuisance, but removing them before ripening usually solves any messy issues.

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