Information on growing and caring for Washingtonia robusta

View of a young Washingtonia robusta

It abounds in gardens, avenues, and streets in areas that enjoy warm or temperate climates. The Robust Washingtonia It is a magnificent palm tree, very resistant, that will give us great satisfaction.

Its growth is fast, it is also said that can grow at the rate of one meter per yearwhich guarantees that in a very short time we will be able to have a magnificent specimen in our garden, we just have to be patient.

Origin of the Robust Washingtonia

Generally a little is known about the Robust Washingtoniabut its origin is still unknown. Therefore, we will tell you some basic aspects and what you have to know since the information of its origin or place of origin can help you with your intentions to have this species in your home.

But before we start, we must clarifyr and above all highlight that this has two variations. The first one is known as Mexican Washingtonia as already said above. The other variation is known under the name of the Californian fan palm.

And although they are different variations of the same species, both belong to California, northwestern Mexicomuch of Florida, Nevada, Arizona and multiple arid areas and those that have soils rich in salts. Since this plant is known to have great resistance to high levels of salinity in the soil.

As a curiosity, this plant is named after one of the greatest presidents of the United StatesGeorge Washington and although the plant is seen in much of this country, its place of origin is from Mexico, specifically the Baja and Sonora regions.

The simple fact that this specimen is seen in other areas far from its place of origin, is due to its great resistance to arid climates and the ease it has to grow and spread.


The Washingtonia robusta is a palm with a slender trunk

Image – Wikimedia / Spikebrennan

Its growth is fast, it is said that it can grow at the rate of one meter per yearwhich guarantees that in a very short time we will be able to have a magnificent specimen in our garden. Although the growth will also depend on the environmental conditions and / or the care given to the plant.

If you decide to have this plant in your house, indoor or outdoor garden or any other area, you have to know that this particular species can grow up to 30 meters tall. But if you give it the necessary care, you can keep it alive for a long time without having to grow so tall.

The Robust Washingtonia It has quite large fan-shaped leaves, about 50cm wide by 60-70cm long without counting the petiole that supports them. They are green in color and with some white threads or hairs that come out of each tip of the leaflet.

It should be noted that the leaves of this plant are perennial.

style=”font-size: medium;”> and its growth like the plant itself is quite fast. The petiole is rigid, green, the edges of which have thorns. I know in charge of holding the leaves. When it dies, the petiole dries up and remains attached to the trunk.

In his youth, the trunk is mainly composed of petioles that are drying out. As the palm tree grows taller, it begins to form the smooth, grayish-brown trunk that we are so used to seeing. As for the diameter of the trunk, it is usually about 40 cm at most.

During its first years of life, the trunk of this plant basically acquires a straight shape. But as its growth increases until it reaches approximately 30 meters in heightthe weight and gravity do their thing and the plant tends to lean or take a curved shape.

Maintaining the Robust Washingtonia It is minimal. It is a palm suitable for xerogardening due to its resistance to droughtand weak frosts down to -5º. However, during the first year of age, and especially if we have it in a pot, it will need periodic watering and fertilization to develop a strong root system.

In previous paragraphs it was commented that this plant was spreads easily thanks to its seeds. Well, as incredible as it may seem to some, this plant produces flowers. Otherwise, it would have no seeds to spread.

As for your flowers, these are grouped in axillary inflorescences. It is easy to distinguish them since it tendsn to be hanging and branching from the center of the plant as such.

The fruit or the seed that these plants generate have a sphere shape and are black in color. If you take a ruler to measure its fruits or seeds, you will notice that its diameter is less than 0.6 cm.


To know how to give the necessary care to the plant, you have to know that his life and integrity will depend a lot on 4 fundamental factorswhich are:

Plant location

How could you have imagined this plant for obvious reasons needs the sun to grow and live. Some tend to plant them in places with partial shade. But it is best to keep it in places where the sun hits them directly.

What is essential is that once the plant has germinated and has begun to grow, you have to plant it in a clear area and where the sun hits it directly once the plant has reached a height of 30 cm. It is advisable to plant it directly in the ground instead of in pots.


The Washingtonia robusta is a palm tree

Obviously there will be a time when you will have this plant in a pot while it is growing. While it isIt is in this place, you have to to waterspecifically two to three times a week during the summer and 5 to 6 times the rest of the year. Once the plant has reached its first year on the flooryou no longer need to water it.

The subscription

This is not as necessary as the previous two factors. Nevertheless, you can do it when spring is about to start Until the summer ends It is best to use organic waste to give the plant nutrients.

Choosing the best planting season

Basically can be planted at any time of the yearbut the most advisable thing is to do it in spring times since the freezing weather and continuous watering has become the least of the requirements.


To cultivate the Robust Washingtonia you will only need to take into account the 4 factors that were mentioned a moment ago and the seeds of the plant to begin their germinationsince this species is propagated, cultivated and grows thanks to its seeds.

The good news is that you don’t have to wait too long to see the germination of this plant. The time is relatively short and only about a month is enough to see a small outbreak.

But if you want the chances of growth to be favorable, we suggest you plant the seeds during the spring. By the way, the compost from herbivorous animals is very good.

The good thing is that you do not have to give it special treatment or be constantly doing maintenance since it does not require it. All you have to do is grab a small plastic container and prepare some wet compost.

Put the seeds in and keep it in a warm place. If conditions permitit will not be necessary to wait 4 weeks for the plant to germinate. And then what you have to do is take the soil together with the plant that has germinated from its container and put it in a larger pot if you want to do it like that.


As could well be observed throughout this article, the plant is relatively easy to plant and / or grow. And everything is thanks to its great capacity and multiplication. Just stand under this plant and look at the ground, you will notice the large amount of seeds scattered all over the ground.

Birds along with other animals that feed on its seeds, make the plant can spread much more easily. And if you want, you can take the seeds yourself and make the plant multiply faster than naturally.

Plagues and diseases

Generally, the plant is incredibly resistant to pests, diseases and environmental conditions. However, those plants that are in full development and have not reached their adult stage tend to be more vulnerable to fusariumas it causes wilting.

On the other hand, while the plant is very young, it is prone to dealing with pests such as:

The red weevil

The red palm weevil affects palm trees

This is a weevil that is very similar to beetles. The larvae of these animals tend to enter the galleries of the plantwhich causes its central leaf to be affected. Although it is also common to see holes in the trunk which indicates that the animal is inside.

The red palm weevil affects palm trees

Related article:

Red palm weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus)


The Robust Washingtonia it resists frosts down to -7ºC.

Do you want one in your garden? Click here! and get seeds.

Information on growing and caring for Washingtonia robusta

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