SelecTree: Tree Detail

BISMARCK PALM
Bismarckia nobilis

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Photo Locations: Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden - Miami, FL, LACMA - Los Angeles, CA, Balboa Park - San Diego, CA, Tropical Gardens of Maui - HI, Foster Botanical Garden - Honolulu, HI, Ho'omaluhia Botanical Garden - Kaneohe, HI, Los Angeles County Arboretum, Arcadia, CA and Santa Barbara Courthouse - Santa Barbara, CA

General Notes

A large palm introduced to cultivation relatively recently in Hawai'i and California. Although in the wild it can grow to almost 200 feet, in local landscapes it reaches much lower heights. The trunk can be emptied and flattened for use as planks or in partition walling; the leaves are used for roofing and basketry and the pith serves as a slightly bitter sago. Bismarckia nobilis has a HPWRA (Hawai'i Pacific Weed Risk Assessment) score of -7 (Low Risk), and the Plant Pono link is: https://plantpono.org/pono-plants/bismarckia-nobilis/.

Has fragrant Flower.

Native to Madagascar.

Family: Arecaceae

Additional Common Names

BISMARCK PALM, BISMARK PALM

Tree Characteristics

Palm Shape.

Has Evergreen foliage.

Height: 40 - 70 feet.

Width: 10 - 15 feet.

Growth Rate: 12 to 24 Inches per Year.

Leaves Palmately Compound, Bluish Green or Silver or Gray Green, No Change, Evergreen.

Flowers Inconspicuous. Fragrant White. Flowers in Spring. Has separate male and female reproductive parts on the same tree (monoecious).

Green to Black Drupe, Medium (0.50 - 1.50 inches), fruiting in Summer or Fall.

Bark Gray, Rough.

Shading Capacity Rated as Low to Moderately Low in Leaf.

Litter Issue is Dry Fruit.

Tree Site Conditions & Constraints

Sunset Zones 19 - 24; H1, H2.

USDA Hardiness Zones 9 - 12.

Exposure Full Sun to Partial Shade.

Well Drained Soil.

Drought tolerant.

Loam or Sand Texture.

Acidic Soil pH.

Seaside Tolerance is Medium in Moderate Zone.

Pests & Disease Information

Susceptible to Scales, Palmetto Weevil.

Health, Safety & Environmental Concerns

Root Damage Potential Rated as Low.

Special Uses & Values

Specimen or Buffer Strip.

Cite this tree:
SelecTree. "Bismarckia nobilis Tree Record." 1995-2020. Sep 29, 2020.
< https://selectree.calpoly.edu/tree-detail/bismarckia-nobilis >

This tree is not part of the SelecTree Nursery Connection. If you would like to see this tree listed, or know of a nursery that sells it, please contact us at ufei@calpoly.edu.