How tall do coconut trees grow


Here’s How Tall Coconut Trees Actually Grow

If you have ever been to a tropical place, you have seen palm trees. But how many of those have been coconut trees, and just how tall do coconut trees grow?

Coconut trees grow in warm tropical climates and depending on the cultivar, reach varying heights. Tall coconut palm cultivars reach a height of 80-100 feet and have a lifespan of 80-100 years. Dwarf varieties of coconut palms can reach a height of 15-60 feet but have an average lifespan of 40-60 years.

So, you may wonder, do all coconut trees grow as tall as 80 to 100 feet? Stick around to learn just how tall the different cultivars of coconut trees grow. It might surprise you to learn many trees do not get as tall!

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How Tall Is The Average Coconut Tree?

The tall coconut palm varieties reach a height of 80-100 feet. These are the coconut trees we all might think of, really tall, very skinny trunks and leaning to one side. The tall varieties of coconut trees live an average lifespan of 80-100 years.

Here are a few tall cultivars of coconut palms:

  • East Coast Tall Coconut 
  • West Coast Tall Coconut 
  • Jamaican Tall Coconut
  • Panama Tall Coconut
  • Maypan Coconut
  • Tiptur Tall Coconut
  • Chandrakalpa Coconut

The dwarf varieties of coconut palms, however, range anywhere from 15-60 feet. Dwarf coconut trees do not live as long as tall coconut varieties, with an average lifespan of 40-60 years.

Here are a few dwarf cultivars of coconut palms:

  • Chowghat Orange Dwarf Coconut
  • Malayan Yellow Dwarf Coconut
  • Golden Malayan Dwarf Coconut
  • Green Dwarf Coconut
  • Macapuno Coconut
  • Fiji Dwarf
  • King Coconut

We will go into more detail about the different coconut palm cultivars, so keep reading!

How Fast Does A Coconut Tree Grow?

A coconut tree can grow anywhere from 12-36 inches each year under the best growing conditions, with an ample amount of sunlight, water, and humidity.

Ample sunlight requirements for coconut trees are over 6 hours of full sunlight per day or about 2,000 hours or more of sunlight every year!

Coconut trees need significant amounts of water to bear fruit. Coconut trees need 15-30 gallons of water per day, but the amount differs depending on the age and where you grow them. You can grow a coconut tree of your own if you live in hardiness zones 10-11, or you can grow a coconut tree indoors, but it will not bear fruit.

Coconut trees need at least 70% humidity, which is why we typically see coconut palms in warm, humid climates. Some cultivars of coconut trees can tolerate drier periods, but they need humidity to produce fruit.

If you are planning on growing a coconut tree, you’ll want to make sure to look at our in-depth guide on how much water coconut trees actually need. It goes over different scenarios where your tree may be growing so you make sure NOT to overwater your coconut tree.

If you decide you want to grow a coconut tree indoors, this is a great humidifier for any of your indoor tropical plants, the Air Innovations Humidifier! This humidifier not only runs for 100 hours, but it also is top fill, operates quietly, and it is a 1. 6 gallon-capacity humidifier!

Once a coconut tree produces coconuts, it leans to one side because of the weight of the fruit, giving the tree’s trunk a curved appearance.

Although coconut trees produce coconuts between 3-8 years, they don’t reach peak coconut production until around 15 to 20 years old!

If you want to learn more about transporting a palm tree before you take on the task, check out 10 Best Steps For Transporting Palm Trees (And How To Do It).

What Are Some Cultivars Of Coconut Trees?

As we mentioned before, there are different cultivars of the coconut tree, including tall and dwarf varieties.

Tall coconut palms:

  • East Coast Tall Coconut 
  • West Coast Tall Coconut 
  • Jamaican Tall Coconut
  • Panama Tall Coconut
  • Maypan Coconut
  • Tiptur Tall Coconut
  • Chandrakalpa Coconut

Dwarf coconut palms:

  • Chowghat Orange Dwarf Coconut
  • Malayan Yellow Dwarf Coconut
  • Golden Malayan Dwarf Coconut
  • Green Dwarf Coconut
  • Macapuno Coconut
  • Fiji Dwarf
  • King Coconut

East Coast Tall Coconut

The east coast tall coconut tree reaches a height of 90 feet and is a fairly common cultivar. It produces coconut fruits starting between 6-8 years old. 

The east coast tall coconut produces a reliable 60-70 coconuts each year! Although this coconut cultivar can tolerate dry conditions, it does best in moist, well-draining soil.

Green Dwarf Coconut

The green dwarf coconut is another variety of the Malayan Dwarf coconut, but this coconut palm reaches a height of only 30 feet tall. 

Unlike the Malayan Yellow or the Golden Malayan, which produce yellow coconuts, the green dwarf coconut produces green coconuts, which are used mainly for their water content.

West Coast Tall Coconut 

The west coast tall coconut palm reaches 100 feet, making it one of the tallest coconut palm cultivars there is! They produce large coconuts with high oil content. 

The west coast tall coconut is tolerant of some drought conditions, but like most coconut palms, it does best in well-draining, moist soil.

Golden Malayan Dwarf Coconut

The Golden Malayan Dwarf coconut is a type of the Malayan Dwarf coconut. The only difference is the coconut color. 

Instead of producing yellow coconuts, this Malayan variety produces dark orange coconuts. The Golden Malayan Dwarf also reaches a height of anywhere from 30-60 feet.

Jamaican Tall Coconut

Similar to the west coast tall coconut, the Jamaican tall coconut can reach up to 100 feet in height.

This coconut tree is most notable for its picturesque, round, dark green canopy. More importantly, the Jamaican tall coconut produces anywhere between 100-200 coconut fruits every year!

Macapuno Coconut

The Macapuno coconut tree is a dwarf coconut tree resulting from a genetic mutation. 

Because of this mutation, the coconut has virtually no water content and is noteworthy for its jelly-like meat that is incredibly soft and flavorful. 

These coconuts are considered a delicacy and used in foods and desserts. The Macapuno coconut only grows to a height of 16 feet tall!

Panama Tall Coconut

The Panama tall coconut palm reaches a height of 90 feet and can grow in hardiness zones 9b-11.  

Unlike the previously mentioned coconut varieties, this coconut palm is the most tolerant of cold temperatures and winds. 

This coconut palm resembles the Jamaican tall coconut. However, the Panama tall’s canopy resembles a weeping shape.

Maypan Coconut

One of the coolest things about the Maypan coconut palm is its resistance to lethal yellowing disease, one of the most fatal diseases to coconut palms. 

This coconut palm is a hybrid cross between the Panama tall, which we just covered, and the Malayan Dwarf. It is a commonly planted cultivar in Florida because of its resistance to lethal yellowing disease. 

Because this cultivar is a cross between a tall and a dwarf coconut palm, this coconut palm only reaches 60 feet tall!

Chowghat Orange Dwarf Coconut

Since we have been talking about 80 feet and taller coconut palms, this dwarf coconut may shock you. The Chowghat Orange Dwarf coconut palm only reaches a height of 16 feet! 

It produces around 65 meat-rich coconuts every year. This cultivar also originated in India and is noteworthy for its large, bright orange coconuts!

Tiptur Tall Coconut

The Tiptur tall coconut palm originated in India. It is an extremely low-maintenance palm and is known for its reliable supply of coconut fruits. This coconut palm produces anywhere from 70-80 coconuts per year!

Chandrakalpa Coconut

The Chandrakalpa coconut palm, also known as the Lakshadweep Ordinary coconut palm, originated in India specifically for large-scale cultivation in several Indian states. 

It is extremely tolerant of all levels of soil moisture, including different soil types. This coconut palm is known for its reliable productivity and produces around 100 coconuts per year!

Malayan Yellow Dwarf Coconut

The Malayan Yellow Dwarf coconut originated in Malaysia in the 1800s. It grows to a height of 60 feet and today is found in humid, tropical climates all over the world. 

The Malayan Dwarf is another cultivar commonly planted in Florida due to its resistance to lethal yellowing disease.  

Fiji Dwarf

The Fiji dwarf coconut palm is another disease-resistant cultivar. The Fiji dwarf coconut replaced thousands of coconut palms that died out because of lethal yellowing disease.

It reaches a height of up to 25 feet and is also tolerant to most weather conditions, including most soil types, wind, and varying rainfall.

King Coconut

Last but certainly not least is the king coconut palm. The king coconut palm tree reaches up to 30 feet tall and is native to Sri Lanka. They are extremely prevalent during hot months on roadsides. King coconuts are a shiny bright orange color and are known for their nutritious, and delicious high water content! 

Have you ever wondered if you can grow palm trees where you live? Well, if you live in or around New Orleans, you can learn more about the palms near you here: 5 Reasons New Orleans Has Palm Trees (Plus Growing Tips)!

What Are The Benefits Of Coconut Trees?

Coconut trees have been utilized for thousands of centuries, specifically because of their multitude of uses.  

You can use every part of the coconut palm tree, from the interior of the coconut to the shells, the roots, the fronds, the husk, and even the trunk!

The interior of the coconut produces coconut water, coconut milk, and coconut oil from its meat called copra.

The sap of coconut trees is used to create syrups, seasonings, alcohol, and candy.

Coconut fronds have a variety of uses. They can be used to weave baskets or bags, create sun shades and mats, used as wraps, and to preserve food and you can even create hats and leis with them.

Coconut coir, the natural fiber around the coconut husk, is used in soil mixes for tropical plants, rope, mats, and even brushes. Coconut coir added in the soil as a growing medium gives plants the drainage and aeration they need.

If you have any tropical plants or are looking to grow your own coconut palm, FoxFarm FX14100 Coco Loco Potting Mix is a perfect soil to start with! It’s a perfect mix of growing mediums with one of its key ingredients being coconut coir! 

FoxFarm soil is incredibly sought after for all indoor plants, and the best thing about this tropical coconut coir potting mix is it holds its weight in water while still being well-draining! This means nutrients and water can be sucked up as needed by the plants, reducing the probability of root rot and insects!

Traditionally, in Polynesian culture, the trunk of the coconut tree was used to create canoes. The trunk of coconut trees is so sturdy it has been used for houses, boats, and even furniture.

What Exactly Is A Coconut Tree?

Did you know the coconut tree is the only species in the genus, Cocos? The scientific name of the coconut tree is Cocos nucifera. Although there is only one species of coconut tree, there are many cultivars of coconut trees grown around the world.

Cultivars are specifically bred varieties of a plant. Breeding specific varieties or hybrids and crosses of plants allows for disease resistance, potentially higher production of fruit, or insect resistance, to name a few.

For centuries, the coconut tree has been used all around the world. People use them for everything from food to furniture, including coconut oil, water, baking, baskets, and arrows.

Coconut trees belong to the Arecaceae family and have no branches! They have only palms, which are a single leaf, commonly called fronds.

These trees grow in hardiness zones 10-11 in hot tropical climates. Typically, tall coconut trees reach up to 100 feet tall, but certain cultivars only reach 15-30 feet tall!

Coconut palm trees can produce anywhere from 50-200 coconuts per year, depending on climate, care, and age, and rarely begin producing fruit until they are between 3-8 years old.

If you have thought about growing palm trees, we have just the article for you, Here’s Why You Can’t Grow Tropical Palm Trees In New York.

That’s A Wrap!

Now that we’ve learned about different cultivars of coconut trees, I think they may just be the ultimate tree! Not only are some varieties disease resistant, but some are also incredibly tolerant and require minimal care once established. Not to mention the abundance of uses of the entire tree!

Thanks for sticking around and learning about coconut trees with us! Maybe you’ll remember some of these amazing coconut tree facts the next time you’re in a tropical place!

References:

Arunachalam, V. , and M. K. Rajesh. “Breeding of coconut palm (Cocos nucifera L.).” CAB Reviews: perspectives in agriculture, veterinary science, nutrition and natural resources 3.053 (2008): 1-12.

Chan, Edward, and Craig R. Elevitch. “Cocos nucifera (coconut).” Species profiles for Pacific Island agroforestry 2 (2006): 1-27.

Liyanage, D. V. “Varieties and forms of the coconut palm grown in Ceylon.” (1958).

Nampoothiri, K. U. K., Krishnakumar, V., Thampan, P. K., & Nair, M. A. (Eds.). (2019). The Coconut Palm (Cocos Nucifera L.)–Research and Development Perspectives. Singapore: Springer.

Watawana, Mindani I., et al. “Enhancement of the antioxidant and starch hydrolase inhibitory activities of king coconut water (Cocos nucifera var. aurantiaca) by fermentation with kombucha ‘tea fungus’.” International Journal of Food Science & Technology 51.2 (2016): 490-498.

Coconut Tree Tips: Growing A Coconut Palm

Table of Contents

It’s safe to say you’ve probably heard of coconut coir, and you’ve enjoyed the delectable dried and sugared shavings of coconut. But have you ever considered growing a coconut tree yourself? Not only can you harvest the delicious flesh of a tropical coconut in the right climate, but you can also use the fibrous fruit coat in soil mixes too. 

So much can be done with coconuts and the coconut palm that it might as well be the signature feature of the tropics. The coconut fruit is commonly used in cooking, and mature coconuts contain hydrating coconut water. But there’s so much mystery surrounding coconut cultivation. That’s pretty incredible when you consider coconut fruits are the most widely used nut in the world. 

You may think, “I can’t grow coconut palm. I live in Maine.” But that’s not exactly true! And what’s more, is you may not need as much space to grow a coconut palm tree in northern USDA zones as you would in the tropics. How is this possible? Read on, and let’s explore the wondrous Cocos nucifera

Good Products At Amazon For Coconut Trees:

  • Neem Bliss 100% Cold Pressed Neem Oil
  • Safer Brand Insect Killing Soap
  • PyGanic Botanical Insecticide

Quick Care Guide

The coconut tree is a lovely tropical palm. Source: zbigphotography
Common Name(s)Coco, coconut, coconut palm
Scientific NameCocos nucifera
Days to HarvestAt least 6 years
LightFull sun
Water1 inch per week
SoilLoamy, sandy, well-drained soil
FertilizerHigh nitrogen granular, every 3-4 months
PestsMealybugs, coconut scale
DiseasesLethal yellowing

All About The Coconut Tree

Coconut fronds are quite pretty, but may have sharp edges on leaf blades. Source: fossiled

The scientific name of coconut palms is Cocos nucifera, known commonly as coconut, coconut palm, and the succinct coco. It was first cultivated by Austronesian people in the neolithic era about 12,000 years ago. Austronesia encompasses a wide array of peoples and places in the Pacific Islands, all the way to Madagascar. It was in these vastly different cultures coconut was central to the way of life there, and still is in many regions. 

Coconut palms are very large in their natural environment, growing up to 100 feet tall. Like other palms, the pinnate leaves break away from a central smooth trunk as the coco grows. In the right conditions, coconut palms produce fruit in the first 6 to 10 years of their lives. Although the fruit is considered a nut, it’s a drupe or stone fruit. Coconut palm cocos are closer in likeness to peaches or plums than they are to pecans. 

In 15 to 20 years, healthy coconut palms reach peak production and produce up to 50 fruits annually. The fruits are multilayered and are either extracted from the top of the plant or collected after they fall to the earth. Some fall into the ocean and disperse significant distances. Coconut palms have shallow fibrous roots that thrive in moist, sandy soils. They produce male and female flowers on the same inflorescence throughout their lives and self-pollinate. The flowers are yellow and puffy, surrounding young fruit yet to ripen. 

Coconut is the most important commercial nut crop in the world. Not only do people across the world center their lives around coconut palms, but the economies of coconut-producing countries benefit greatly from coconut production.

People in tropical environments are primed to grow a coconut palm, but those in other regions can enjoy coconut as well in controlled environments. In areas where it’s way too cold, coconut palm can stand in the home as a lovely palmate houseplant. Container-grown palms may not produce fruit, but they are still unique and vibrant plants you can enjoy!

Types of Coconut

Although a common coconut palm can get up to 100 feet tall, there are different varieties out there that reach lesser heights. Dwarf varieties grow anywhere from 16 to 30 feet tall. Semi-dwarf coconut palms reach the higher of the dwarf heights. Standard palms are those we’ve discussed in the previous section. 

One standard, fast-growing variety called Jamaican Tall has a crooked, wide trunk and is well adapted to the tropical environment of South Florida. Another variety, called Malayan Dwarf, is slower-growing but doesn’t get as tall. This palm produces three different flower and fruit cultivars that come in green, gold, or yellow.  

Recently work has been done to breed coconut palm trees to encourage resistance to the disease, lethal yellowing (LY). Malayan Dwarf has shown significant resistance to LY, making it a great dwarf variety for people in tropical areas of North America. Another of the dwarf cultivars with resistance to LY is Fiji Dwarf, which is best grown in isolation from other palms in Latin America. 

Maypan coco palm is a hybrid of a tall variety of coco that was cultivated in Jamaica to combat LY. The young coco on this palm is green, and the trunk is slightly crooked. It’s also suited to cooler areas on the Atlantic coasts of Florida. People in colder areas of the world grow almost any variety indoors for ornamental purposes too. Growth stunts here, making it easy to contain what would be a massive plant in its native region.

Planting

Nursery-raised coconut seedlings emerge from their seed husks. Source: tmmtx76

The best time to plant coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) is in the warm, wet summer months. However, coco transplants are alright at any time of year. Transplant young palm coco in 12 inches of soil. If you’re planting in the ground, know that coco palm is native to the Pacific Coast, South America, and other countries with tropical climates. Do not plant coco outdoors unless you live in a place where annual rainfall is about 60 inches annually, and relative humidity is 70 to 80%. Otherwise, cultivate them in a greenhouse. 

Coastal areas are great for these plants, and cold weather should be avoided at all costs. Likewise, even tall cultivars don’t do well in intense winds. Shelter them from these elements. Since the root system is shallow, plant your tree in sandy, loamy, well-drained soil and allow it to root. They’ll take off pretty quickly with the right conditions. For in-ground plants, prepare a hole that is 2 to 3 feet wide, and 1 to 3 feet deep.

Coco palm roots should be planted just an inch or two below the soil surface. For container-grown coco, a pot that is 3 gallons in volume and at least 12 inches deep is best. For those grown in the earth in coastal areas where the climate conditions and ocean currents are right, construct beds that are multiple feet high and wide, which promotes the drainage away from the roots. Coco roots are sensitive to rot in low-lying areas. Space in-ground coconuts at least 100 feet apart to prevent overcrowding.

Care

Sprouts emerge from the “eyes” of the inner coconut shell. Source: tree-species

Let’s discuss all the necessities related to growing coconuts. Care for them properly, and you’ll have that lovely fresh coconut meat when your palms are at optimal production.  

Sun and Temperature

Because coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) thrives in the tropics, it needs full direct sun for at least 6 hours per day. Coco has a relatively small hardiness area – zones 10 through 12 – making coconuts a common occurrence today in South Florida, and for a long time for Caribbean native inhabitants. These zones are the only ones in USDA purview that have adequate amounts of heat. 

Coconut palms are extremely sensitive to cold. They take on damage at 40 degrees Fahrenheit. At continuous temperatures of 30 degrees, coconut palms will surely die. That’s why it’s so important to ensure your coconuts have the right temperature conditions. As long as humidity is at least 70%, coconuts can take quite a bit of heat. Dry heat is not good for them, though. If proper humidity is not present, fruit drop can occur. 

Water and Humidity

Water your coconut palms in the morning around the base of the trunk until the top two inches of soil is adequately moist. It’s hard to overwater a coconut palm, but note they do not like to be flooded. Give your plant in a container or the ground at least one inch of water per week. As long as your soil type is right, and good drainage is present, you can water in any format. In areas where palms are grown commercially, for their coconut meat, they are watered by drip irrigation with liters at a time every few days. In drier areas, water more frequently. 

The only time to pull back on watering your coco is when there is a significant amount of rain and humidity in the summer. 

Soil

Coconuts subsist in sandy soil or rocky ground that is loamy. Well-draining soil is a must. They can subsist in poor soil, but they won’t produce as many delicious coconuts in those conditions. They have a wide pH range for growing, from acidic (5) to slightly alkaline (8). If you’re planting a whole coconut palm in a container, give it a good palm soil mix. This will have the right balance of planting media needed to grow them. If you want to make your own palm soil, combine 2 parts potting soil, 2 parts manure or compost, and 1 part sand. This also works as a preparation for planting these palm shade trees in the ground. 

Fertilizing

Ripe coconuts require regular fertilizer. Palms enjoy a wide array of macro and micronutrients, and thankfully there are several “palm special” fertilizers out there. These contain an NPK of 8-2-12, with added magnesium, boron, and other micronutrients. They also come in a slow-release pellet form. Spread this under the canopy, at a ratio of 1.5lbs per 100 square feet of canopy. Of course, this will be greatly reduced for container growing, at under a cup per container. Apply this fertilizer every one to three months when the weather remains dry for at least 24 hours. 

Pruning

Coconut palms are not deciduous, and only drop leaves as a part of their normal cycles. Therefore, they are green most of the year, barring improper nutrients or growing conditions. They don’t need pruning but benefit from the removal of old yellowing leaves once per year. In the taller varieties of South Florida, people climb ladders to remove old fronds. Early Polynesian voyagers pruned them by tying a sash tightly around their ankles which helped them compress their feet around the trunk to climb it. This method is not recommended for those who don’t have experience. 

Propagation

The only propagation mode is seed. When the coconuts themselves make a sloshing sound, the seed can be planted. Place it on its side with the three eyes angled very slightly upward, and bury it with sand to about half the thickness of the hard shell of coconut. Maintain high humidity and temperatures between 90 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit, in full sunlight. Germination will occur, and at 6 months young palms can be transplanted. 

Harvesting and Storing

Inside the coconut husk is an inner shell that contains the meat and water. Source: avinashbhat

This is probably the coolest part about a coco plant: getting to that sweet sweet solid endosperm that is coconut meat. There are so many more uses for coco than that though. 

Harvesting

Once a coco plant is at full maturity and begins to produce fruit, harvest mature fruit right away or up to 12 months after first maturity. A plant grown for coco water or coconut milk should be harvested at most 7 months after maturity. Green coconuts (immature coconuts) can be harvested when they reach the desired size. Those harvested for coconut flesh need to be fully ripe before they can be harvested. You’ll know a coco is mature when the water-filled nut emits a slosh when rocked. 

As mentioned above, harvest coconuts with a large sharp knife on a ladder for taller plants. You can also use a knife attached to a long pole if climbing up isn’t your style. Cut at the base of the stalk of the lowest nuts, and let them drop below. Or put them in a basket or other receptacle. There are some different ways to process products depending on the coconut products you’d like to use. Trim young coconuts with a sharp knife to enjoy their fruit and water. For fully mature nuts, trim the husk with a very sharp knife. Use a knife to dig into the vulnerable eye for coco meat, water, and generally the inside of the coconut. 

Storing

From here, separate the husk and process it into coconut coir for gardening, rope, or matting. Alternately, crack open the nuts, and dry them in the oven for 10 minutes at 170 degrees Fahrenheit. Then blend the meat in filtered water, and strain the flesh from the liquid. Heat the resulting liquid in a pan on low for 1 to 2 hours. Remove the remaining solids and strain coconut oil into an airtight container. Store the coconut oil in the refrigerator for up to five years. 

Fresh coco meat lasts for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator. Opened and processed, they’ll keep in the fridge for 1 week. Roasted, shredded coconut lasts for 2 to 3 months in the refrigerator. In each of these states, they’ll keep in the freezer for up to 8 months.  

Troubleshooting

Coconuts hang heavy on this loaded tree. Source: J Fortune

Although coconut is a pretty laid-back plant, it does need some attention in non-native regions (for instance, in the US, outside of South Florida). There are a few things you’ll commonly come into contact with, so let’s cover those. 

Growing Problems

One of the main issues coco growers deal with is nutrient deficiencies. These present in the form of yellowing leaves, and blossom or fruit drop. Simply add palm fertilizer in the case of nutrient deficiency. Consult the Fertilizer heading above to determine what type to use. 

If it’s too cold, coco takes on damage, or at worst, dies. Keep it in humid, hot, direct sunlight. If it’s not humid enough, growth will slow on your plant. If you live somewhere a coco wouldn’t get enough light from the surrounding environment, give the palm a grow light.

Coco doesn’t appreciate flooding for long. If your plant experiences flooding for more than a few days, it could experience root rot. Add sand to the soil or transplant it if the area you planted it in is prone to flooding. 

Pests

There are quite a few coco pests to look out for. Here, we’ll cover just two prominent pests. Mealybugs look like small cotton-ball insects that excrete a sweet liquid called honey dew on coco fronts and fruit. On smaller trees, wipe them away with a clean cloth soaked in rubbing alcohol. On larger trees, apply spray insecticidal soap or neem oil every 7 to 10 days. Pyrethrin is a good option for larger infestations. 

Coconut scale looks like a white scaly fungus, but is actually flattened insects that congregate on all parts of coco plants. These insects suck sap from the parts of the plant where they exist. Damaged parts of the plant can be removed to prevent spread, and the rubbing alcohol trick works well for small area issues as well. In larger infestations, horticultural oil, neem oil, or azadirachtin sprays can be applied once every 7 to 10 days.

Leafhoppers are common to find on coconut, but usually don’t do lasting damage to the tree themselves. Unfortunately, they can be a vector for diseases, which we’ll go into in just a moment. Neem oil, insecticidal soap, or pyrethrin are effective treatment measures for leafhopper pests.

Diseases

Lethal yellowing (LY) is one of the most prominent diseases coco plants experience. Leaves drop from the fronds, fruits drop, and flowers drop too when LY is present. In the late stages of this phytoplasmic disease transferred by leaf hoppers, the entire crown turns yellow. The only way to prevent LY is to plant varieties that are naturally resistant. In extreme cases, antibiotics can be administered, but often this proves unsuccessful. In this case, remove the entire plant and dispose of it in the trash. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the difference between a coconut tree and a palm tree?

A: Coco is in the palm family, but produces the delectable nut that so many people love.  

Q: Where do coconut trees grow?

A: Coconut trees grow in sunny, hot coastal climates. 

Q: Can I grow a coconut tree?

A: Absolutely! With the right know-how, you’ll be able to at least grow a lovely houseplant. In the right conditions, you can enjoy coconuts after many years.

how it grows, how to plant at home

Agree that the sight of a coconut tree has long been a symbol of an impeccable and serene paradise beach holiday! Are you interested in learning a little more about this palm tree? In this article, we have collected the most interesting in a brief overview of what a coconut palm is, where it grows, what fruits it has, and also how to plant a coconut palm at home!

In this article you will learn:

  • 1 THE COCONUT TREE AND HOW IT GROWS
    • 1.1 Botanical certificate of coconut palm
    • 1.2 How to plant a coconut palm at home
    • 1. 3 Conditions for good palm growth
  • 2 videos: how to grow a palm tree at home

Coconut palm palm tree: where it grows

Coconut palm botanical reference

  • The coconut palm is the only representative of the coconut genus, palm family.
  • Her homeland is not exactly established, but presumably - it is Southeast Asia, or rather - Malaysia.
  • More than 80% of all currently growing coconut palms are in the countries of Southeast Asia.
  • The fruits of the coconut palm - coconuts - are able to maintain their normal nutritional properties for 100 days in salty sea water.
  • Coconut palm can easily tolerate salty soils, so it grows on the seashore where no other tree can withstand such salinity of the soil!
  • Coconut tree 25-30 meters high. She has a smooth trunk with ring-shaped scars on it from fallen leaves.
  • The barrel is always tilted to one side.
  • The trunk of the palm is wider at its base than at the top.
  • When the conditions for the life of a palm tree are favorable, it blooms all year round. Every 4 weeks new inflorescences appear.
  • From the cut top of the unopened inflorescence of the coconut palm, sweet palm sap is collected, which contains up to 15% sugar. This sweet juice is made into brown crystalline raw sugar using the evaporation method.
  • The same sweet juice is used to make coconut wine and coconut vinegar using the fermentation process. Coconut wine has a low alcohol content and a strong invigorating and refreshing effect. It tastes like a good grape table wine.
  • The coconut palm begins to bear fruit only at the age of six years. Its productivity increases gradually, and only by the fifteenth year of life reaches a maximum.
  • Around the age of 50-60 palm yields begin to decline.
  • A mature tree produces approximately 100-120 coconuts per year. And under excellent favorable climatic and other conditions, a coconut palm can produce 200 fruits per year.
  • There are two types of coconut palms - common and dwarf. Dwarf palm trees are only ten meters high, their fruits are smaller than those of an ordinary palm tree, but they begin to bear fruit already in the fourth year of life.

How to plant a coconut tree at home

  • To do this, place the coconut in a warm place (greenhouse) where it will have to sprout.
  • After that, you need to move it to a pot of earth.
  • The germination process takes approximately six months.

How to plant a coconut tree at home

Conditions for good palm growth

  • It is very thermophilic, so it needs a temperature of 25-30 degrees.
  • The soil for palm trees should consist of peat and humus.
  • Be sure to use drainage when planting.
  • When planting, do not immerse the nut completely in the ground, only its lower part should be in the ground.
  • The coconut tree is very fond of light and humid air.
  • Water regularly, it should be moderate so that there is no waterlogging of the soil, as the plant may die.
  • Fertilize with organic fertilizer about once a month.
  • In winter, water your palm tree less often and not as much as in summer.
  • Trim dry leaves in time.
  • Keep a close eye on the leaves and trunk of the palm tree for pests, so that the plant does not look sick, so that too many yellow leaves do not appear.
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Video: how to grow a palm tree at home

Sources of information

Contents

  • Varieties, varieties and forms with photo
  • Growing coconut palm at home
  • Propagation and how to germinate
  • Features of care at home
  • Transplanting a plant
  • Diseases and pests of the coconut tree and methods of combating them

The coconut palm is the only species of the genus Coconut of the Palm family or Arecaceae. The origin of the name "coconut" is associated with the time of the famous Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama because of the similarity of nuts with the muzzle of a monkey (soso). Malaysia is believed to be her homeland. Another name for the tree is lithocarium.

Coconut palm grows up to 6 meters under proper conditions and care. But in an unsuitable room can withstand no more than two years. This plant is photophilous, therefore it feels more comfortable in winter gardens and greenhouses.

Edible oval, large fruits (nuts) weighing up to 2.5 kg are especially valued. In nature, the crop is harvested twice - in the first half of summer and at the end of autumn. One tree produces an average of a hundred fruits per season.

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Harvest is rare in greenhouse conditions. The domestic coconut palm is grown as an ornamental tub plant.

Interesting! Often palm trees grow on sea coasts, their nuts, thanks to a waterproof shell, can “travel” over the waves for long distances, while remaining edible and not losing their germination.

Varieties, varieties and forms with photo

Of the dozens of varieties of coconut palms (common and dwarf), only a few can be grown at home:

  1. Genuine palm (C. nucifera) – under natural conditions it is a tall and powerful tree with a giant crown. It grows slowly in greenhouses, reaching a height of three meters. A young palm tree has narrow and long leaves resembling fish tails; in a mature plant, they are large and pinnate. The plant does not take root well.
  2. Weddeliana Coconut (C. Weddeliana) is a Brazilian dwarf variety with arched fronds and narrow leaves. Above - glossy green, and below - matte silver. This unpretentious plant in nature grows on rocky soil, so pebbles must be added to the clay-soddy soil. Feels good at the east window with not direct sunlight. With abundant watering without stagnant moisture, it holds up to 12 leaves. Looks good in the garden in a bottle. Loves heat, does not tolerate damage to the roots.
  3. Only some varieties of coconut palm are cultivated at home.

    Rumyantsev Coconut (C. Romanzoffiana) is an elegant plant with long fronds adorned with lush, feathery leaves. He hails from Brazil. At home, it grows above 3 meters. Considered to be one of the best indoor growing palms.

  4. Excellent coconut (Cocos insignis) is a fairly rare variety of coconut trees. Fits well in living quarters. It is similar to the Weddel coconut, but larger. He loves the sun very much, he is afraid of abundant watering with stagnant water in the roots.
  5. Feathered coconut (C. plumosa) and flexible (C. flexuosa) are more difficult to grow indoors because their wai reach sizes up to 5 m.

Coconut growing at home

Coconut growing at home is carried out with the help of a fruit or a nut. The question of how many seeds are in the fruit of a coconut palm can be unequivocally answered - only one. The process of its germination can last up to six months.

Only ripe, unpeeled fruit is suitable for sprouting. There should be a lot of liquid inside it. Before planting, the fruit is soaked for at least three days. For successful germination, special conditions are needed: a temperature close to 30 degrees. It is best to keep it in a greenhouse with constantly high humidity.

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When a sprout emerges from a nut, the fruit is placed in a container with soil, while the upper part of it remains above the ground.

Conditions for growing seedlings:

  1. The soil should be loose, it is good to dilute the universal flower soil by half with sand.
  2. The container must be 2 times the size of the fruit.
  3. Drainage is laid on its bottom, a hole is required to drain excess liquid.
  4. The temperature should be 23-26 degrees.
  5. When planting, a part of the nut is left above the ground.

    The plant needs light, but not direct light. It is desirable to artificially lengthen the daylight hours with special lighting.

  6. Sprout needs constant, high humidity (up to 80%). Regular spraying of air helps with this. For the first time, you can cover the pot with a transparent container or film.
  7. Once a month, the seedlings need top dressing with organic water-soluble fertilizers. For the prevention of fungi, they are combined with fungicides.
  8. After the appearance of two true leaves, it is transplanted into a large container with a clod of earth, without disturbing the roots.

Propagation and how to germinate

There are two main methods for germinating seeds:

  • In a container. It is often used in nurseries. Seeds in large quantities are placed in a large container. At home, you can put it in a greenhouse. The plants are easy to observe and can be selectively transplanted into separate containers.
  • Germination in a closed bag. This method is more suitable for indoor palm cultivation. In this case, the seeds planted in moist (but not wet) peat are lowered into a plastic bag, which is placed next to the heater. In addition to warmth, they need good lighting, ventilation and moderate moisture.

The composition and structure of the soil is especially important for young plants. This should be a light, well-drained mix (preferably sandy loam) with a pH of 5.5-8. The composition of equal parts of sod and leafy soil, humus, perlite, peat and tree bark will be successful. You can even grow palm trees in the sand, but then pay special attention to their top dressing.

Coconut at home can be sprouted in a bag or container.

Sometimes the palm gives daughter plants.

Propagation by shoots is carried out as follows:

  • They are separated from the mature plant by cutting, without disturbing its roots.
  • The shoot is planted on a peat-sand substrate and covered with a transparent greenhouse.
  • Rooting lasts up to 12 weeks. At this time, they are watered little.
  • When a new shoot appears, the plants are aired daily, gradually increasing their time.
  • After the final removal of the greenhouse, watering is increased, once a month the seedlings are fed with organic matter during watering.
  • Transplant the palm into a large container next spring.

Interesting! The term "coconut" is not accurate. In fact, it is a drupe fruit with an outer, fibrous shell and an inner hard shell. It has three pores and three ovules. Only one of them develops a seed.

Home Care Features

The following conditions are required for growing coconut trees:

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  1. Lighting. The plant loves light, with its lack, artificial lighting is needed. Light day should be 12 hours. When growing perennials on the south side at noon, light shading is necessary, otherwise the leaves dry and curl.
  2. The temperature of must not be below 17 degrees, otherwise the palm tree will die. In summer, the favorable temperature is 22-28 degrees.
  3. Germinated coconut is regularly watered and sprayed.

    Humidity must be constantly high. To do this, carry out regular spraying and wet rubbing of the leaves. It is desirable at the same time that water does not fall on the soil.

  4. Watering. Water the plant with warm, settled water. The frequency of watering is determined by the condition of the soil: in summer it should be a little wet, and in winter just not dry out.
  5. Top dressing. Palm, although it grows slowly, due to lack of space at home, it needs regular feeding. To do this, use special fertilizers for palm trees. In spring and summer, they are applied twice a month, in autumn - half as often, and in winter they are completely stopped.
  6. Cutting. Damaged and dry leaves are removed. But if they only turned yellow or darkened, then they leave it. This is necessary for the proper nutrition of plants.

Important. To avoid one-sidedness, the palm tree is rotated twice a month.

Plant repotting

Young plants are repotted annually for better growth. Do it in the middle of spring. The new capacity should be only a couple of centimeters or 10% larger than the previous one.

The plant is removed from the tub with a clod of earth, only damaged roots are removed. The palm tree is planted at the same depth as before. The earth mixture and drainage layer should be the same as in the old place. If the roots are exposed or damaged during transplantation, then for better survival in a new place, some of the leaves are cut off near the palm tree.

Perennials that have reached the age of 3-4 are transplanted only if necessary. A mature palm does not like to be disturbed and its roots damaged. In response, it may stop growing.

Help. It is interesting to know how much the coconut palm grows. Under natural conditions, tall varieties develop up to 80 years, and dwarf ones - up to 40 years. In residential areas, with good care, they continue to grow for 2-3 decades.

The grown palm must be replanted every year.

Diseases and pests of the coconut tree and methods of their control

Potted coconut palms can be affected by pests: scale insects, spider mites, mealybugs, thrips. Preventive measures are wet wiping the leaves. Young plants are "bathed" in a warm solution of Persian chamomile or green soap, and after a while they are washed away.

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Pest control measures:

  1. Scale insects and mealybugs are removed by mechanical cleaning with a hard sponge and soap, spraying with tobacco solution or actellik (1 ml per liter of water).
  2. A warm shower, a soapy solution, an infusion of citrus peel or the same concentration of Actellic helps against spider mites.
  3. When affected by powdery mildew, diseased plants are isolated and wet pollinated with sulfur powder, repeating the treatment after 10 days.
  4. Get rid of thrips and aphids by spraying with 3% chlorophos or infusions of tobacco, ash.

Treatments with home remedies are also effective: infusions of chamomile, mustard, potato tops, onions, garlic and others. Do them three times with weekly breaks.

If the palm has been attacked by pests, the leaves are treated with special preparations.

Excessive watering threatens with fungal diseases:

  1. Yellowing of the crown is often an indicator of phytoplasmosis infection. In this case, diseased plants are destroyed.
  2. Black root rot, spot, pink rot attack weakened plants. The leaves rot, the shoots wither, the trunk turns black, pink spores appear.

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