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Winter hardy / Chinese Windmill Palm (Trachycarpus fortunei)

Chinese Windmill Palm (Trachycarpus fortunei)
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The Chinese Windmill Palm has been popular in Europe as a hardy palm since the 19th century.

Expected processing time

2 days

€ 3,50
Price per 20 seeds


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Family: Arecaceae
Scientific name: Trachycarpus fortunei 
Common name: Chinese Windmill Palm
Origin: China

The Chinese Windmill Palm has been popular in Europe as a hardy palm since the 19th century. In 1849 the Scottish botanist Robert Fortune brought the species to Kew Garden in London, after which the species was named after him. Before that the plant had already been cultivated for thousands of years in China and Japan for its strong fibers in the leaves. These fibers were used to make rope and firm bags. Because of this long history it is hard to say where the species originates, but it is most probably the mountains in central China or the Himalaya’s. Young plants can withstand temperatures as low as -8 degrees, but older plants can withstand -20 degrees without any frost protection. This makes it a good species to plant in the full soil in areas in Europe where temperatures don’t drop below -20, where it could even flower. Female and male flowers grow in large clusters, which can turn into clusters of many yellow fruits. The palm grows best in a sunny and wind-protected place with enough water available, but a less sunny and more windy place will also do.

Sowing description: Soak the seeds for 48 hours in water and then sow in sowing mix. Keep the soil lightly moist and germinate at room temperature. Germination usually occurs within a few weeks, but if not they can still germinate while the seeds are hard.  

Sowing time: Whole year
Difficulty: Easy  
Minimum temperature:
-20 degrees Celsius

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