Please Note: We are no-longer updating this page, however, you can see similar results by filtering our species database for zone 9a and below palm species, and zone 9b palm species.
The Species Database is an online reference for Palm Trees and Cycads for research purposes.

Please Note: Species information pages linked from the database are a work in progress. And are under continuous, infinite revision.

UK Hardy Palm Trial Results

This list is far from complete. It represents the initial results of several years experimenting with potential cold hardy palm species here in Cornwall in the UK. The results arise from our findings here or from records of palm species in similar environments in other countries. The question marks (?) in the table under the Damaged or Died columns means that those temperatures are not yet proven for the UK. The reason for this is that the lowest temperature we have had in this location is only -4°C since we have been conducting these experiments. The lowest temperature ever recorded here is -8.8°C on 2nd January 1979, this temperature was a very rare occasion and we cannot expect temperatures here to fall that low in the near future. Pending feedback from people attempting to grow these species in the colder North East of Britain we won't know just how cold hardy some of them are in the UK. The solitary question mark in the Damaged column means that the palm suffered no damage whatsoever at -4°C .

The location of Trebrown Nurseries, where we conduct these experiments is approximately 2.5 km from the south coast of East Cornwall. We are situated half way down a south-facing hillside, 16 metres above the valley bottom, at an altitude of 50 m (150 ft) above sea-level. We get, on average 10 nights below freezing each year with, usually no more than 3 of those nights as low as -3 or -4°C.
We estimate that our hardiness zone is borderline between zones 9a and 9b See the hardiness zone map.

Species Zone Damaged Died Notes
Acoelorrhaphe wrightii 9b -1°C -4.8°C ?  
Acrocomia aculeata 'totai' 9a -4°C ? ? We do not yet have any records, which determine just how hardy this is.
Allagoptera arenaria 9b -1°C -3.1°C Almost certainly hardier than this if planted as an understorey palm in a woodland environment.
Allagoptera campestris 9a -1.8°C -4.4°C ?  
Archontophoenix alexandrae 9b 0°C -1.4°C Almost certainly hardier than this if planted as an understorey palm in a woodland environment.
Archontophoenix 'Illawarra' 9b 0°C 3.2°C Almost certainly hardier than this if planted as an understorey palm in a woodland environment. And is no hardier than A. cunninghamiana.
Archontophoenix cunninghamiana 9b 0°C 3.2°C Almost certainly hardier than this if planted as an understorey palm in a woodland environment.
Arenga engleri 9a -3.8°C -5.5°C ?  
Arenga micrantha 9a -2°C -5°C ?  
Attalea cohune 9a -2°C -4.8°C ?  
Attalea speciosa 9a -2°C -4°C  
Beccariophoenix madagascariensis 9b -1°C -3°C  
Bismarckia nobilis 9b -1°C -4.5°C ? The more silver the palm, the hardier it is. Almost certainly hardier than this if planted as an understorey palm in a woodland environment.
Borassus aethiopium 9b 0°C -3.6°C  
Borassus flabellifer 9b 0°C -3.3°C  
Brahea armata 8a ? -10.3°C ?  
Brahea berlandieri 9a -3°C -6°C ?  
Brahea brandegeei 9a -3°C -6°C ?  
Brahea decumbens 8b ? -9.4°C ?  
Brahea dulcis 9a -3°C -4.5°C ?  
Brahea edulis 9a -4.2°C -6.6°C ? May be hardier than this.
Brahea moorei 8b ? -9.4°C ?  
Brahea nari 8a ? -11.5°C ?  
Brahea nitida 9a -1°C -5°C ?  
Butia bonnettii 7b ? -12.8°C ?  
Butia capitata 8a ? -9.9°C ? May be hardier than this.
Butia eriospatha 8a ? -9.5°C ? May be hardier than this.
Butia paraguayensis 9a -3°C -4.5°C ?  
Butia yatay 8b ? -9.5°C ? May be hardier than this.
Calamus inermis 9b 0°C -3.3°C Needs to be planted as an understorey palm. May be hardier in denser woodland.
Caryota gigas 9b 0°C -2.2°C  
Caryota maxima 'Himalaya' 9b 0°C -3.3°C Certainly not as hardy as some say.
Caryota mitis 9b 0°C -2.5°C  
Caryota obtusa 9b 0°C -2.7°C May be hardier than this. Needs to be planted as an understorey palm.
Caryota ochlandra 9b 0°C -2.7°C May be hardier than this. Needs to be planted as an understorey palm.
Caryota urens 9b 0°C -2.6°C May be hardier than this. Needs to be planted as an understorey palm.
Ceroxylon alpinum 9a -3°C -4.5°C ? Difficult to know what it likes.
Ceroxylon parvifrons 9b -1°C -3°C  
Ceroxylon quindiuense 9b -1°C -3°C May be hardier than this.
Chamaedorea cataractarum 9b -1°C -3.9°C  
Chamaedorea elegans 9a -2.5°C -4.3°C ?  
Chamaedorea ernesti-augustii 9a -2.5°C -5.6°C ?  
Chamaedorea klotzschiana 9a -2°C -5°C ?  
Chamaedorea metallica 9b 0°C -4°C ?  
Chamaedorea microspadix 8b -4°C -7.4°C ?  
Chamaedorea plumosa 9a -2°C -4.7°C ?  
Chamaedorea radicalis 9a -2°C -6.5°C ?  
Chamaedorea seifrizii 9b 0°C -3.9°C  
Chamaedorea stolonifera 9b 0°C -2.8°C  
Chamaerops humilis 8b ? -8.8°C ?  
Chamaerops humilis 'cerifera' 8b ? -8.8°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Coccothrinax barbadensis 9b 0°C -2.8°C  
Copernicia alba 9b 0°C -3.6°C  
Corypha lecomtei 9a -3°C -6.7°C ? Going by its provenance it should be hardier than C. umbraculifera.
Corypha umbraculifera 9a -3°C -6.7°C ? We've also tried C. utan with mixed results. It is certainly not as hardy as this one.
Dypsis ambositrae 9a ? -5°C ? The palm is too new to know for sure. It may be much hardier than this.
Dypsis baronii 9a -3°C -5°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Dypsis crinita 9a -1.5°C -3.5°C Not as hardy as some say.
Dypsis decipiens 9a -2.5°C -6°C ?  
Dypsis heteromorpha 9a ? -8°C ? This is certainly the hardiest of the Dypsis, but there are 10 or 11 other Dypsis, which grow at a similar altitude that we would like to try.
Dypsis oropedionis 9a -2.5°C -5°C ? May be hardier than this.
Elaeis guineensis 10b 0°C 0°C I collected my seed for this trial from what I believe is some of the most northerly planted trees.
Guihaia argyrata 9a -2°C -5.7°C ?  
Howea forsteriana 9a -1°C -4°C ? Needs to be planted as an understorey palm.
Hyphaene petersiana 9a -2.6°C -6°C ?  
Juania australis 9a ? -5.6°C ? We've not trialed this yet, but from our research it would be at home on a Cornish sea cliff.
Jubaea chilensis 8a ? -10.7°C ?  
Latania lontaroides 9a -1°C -4.7°C ? We've also trialed L. loddigessii but with poor results. All 3 Latanias need more research.
Licuala peltata var. sumawongii 9b -1°C -3.3°C Not as hardy as some say.
Livistona australis 9a -3°C -5.6°C ?  
Livistona chinensis 8b -3.5°C -6.9°C ?  
Livistona decipiens 9a -3°C -5°C ?  
Livistona saribus 9a -3°C -4.6°C ?  
Lytocaryum hoehnei 9b 0°C -3.9°C May be hardier as an understorey palm.
Lytocaryum weddellianum 9b 0°C -3.9°C May be hardier as an understorey palm.
Nannorrhops ritchiana 8b ? -8.9°C ?  
Nannorrhops ritchiana (Silver) 7b ? -13.9°C ?  
Parajubaea cocoides 9b -2°C -2.6°C  
Parajubaea torallyi var. microcarpa 9a -2°C -5.3°C ?  
Parajubaea torallyi var. torallyi 9a -3°C -6.5°C ?  
Phoenix acaulis 8b ? -7.2°C ?  
Phoenix canariensis 9a -5°C -8.5°C -8.5 is really the mark. It has been tried many times in the UK.
Phoenix dactylifera 9a -5°C -6.5°C ?  
Phoenix dactylifera var. Medjool 9a ? -7°C ? Research being carried out in the states suggests that this may actually be hardier than P. canariensis. it certainly seams to be more tolerant of damp and coastal positions than other P. dactylifera cultivars.
Phoenix loureiri var. humilis 8b ? -7.2°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Phoenix hanceana loureiroi var. loureiroi 8b ? -6°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Phoenix reclinata 9a 0°C -4°C  
Phoenix roebelinii 9b 0°C -3.6°C -3.6 is the best you can achieve. You may loose it at much lower temperatures.
Phoenix rupicola 9b 0°C -3.5°C May be hardier.
Phoenix sylvestris 9a -3°C -6°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Phoenix theophrastii 8b ? -7.2°C ? May be much hardier than this.
Ravenea glauca 9a -1°C -5°C ?  
Rhapidophyllum hystrix 7b ? -14.9°C ? This is almost certainly the hardiest palm of all, it'll tolerate cold in any situation in Britain. Although, Sabal minor, the other cold hardiest candidate has been recorded at a lower temperature it requires an understorey woodland environment.
Rhapis excelsa 9a -2°C -6°C ?  
Rhapis humilis 9a -3°C -6°C ?  
Rhapis multifida 9a -3°C -6°C ?  
Rhopalostylis sapida 9b -2°C -3.9°C Not as hardy as you might expect for a New Zealand palm. The South Island Nikau may well be hardier. Requires an understorey environment.
Sabal domingensis 9a -3°C -5.6°C ?  
Sabal mexicana 8b ? -8.5°C ?  
Sabal minor 7a ? -15.3°C ? One of the hardiest of all palms. Requires an understorey environment.
Sabal palmetto 8a ? -12.2°C ?  
Sabal uresana 8b -4°C -8°C ? May be hardier than this.
Serenoa repens 8b -3°C -7.7°C ? The silver form may be hardier than this.
Syagrus comosa 9a -1°C -5.6°C ?  
Syagrus quinquefaria 9a -1°C -5.6°C ?  
Syagrus romanzoffiana 9b 0°C -3.9°C May be hardier than this, depends on provenance.
Trachycarpus fortunei 8a ? -11.9°C ?  
Trachycarpus latisectus 9a -3°C -6.6°C ? Not as hardy as some think.
Trachycarpus martianus var. khasia hills 9a -3°C -5°C ?  
Trachycarpus martianus var. nepal 9a -3°C -6.6°C ?  
Trachycarpus nanus 7b ? -13.9°C ?  
Trachycarpus oreophilus 8a ? -10°C ?  
Trachycarpus princeps 8a ? -11.9°C ?  
Trachycarpus sp. Naga Hills (Manipur) 8a ? -10°C ? Too new to know much yet.
Trachycarpus takil 7b ? -14.2°C ?  
Trachycarpus wagnerianus 8a ? -10.5°C ?  
Trithrinax acanthocoma 9a -3°C -6.4°C ?  
Trithrinax brasiliensis 9a -2°C -4.4°C ?  
Trithrinax campestris 8a ? -10.5°C ?  
Trithrinax schizophylla 9a -2°C -5°C ?  
Wallichia caryotoides 9b -2°C -2.2°C May be hardier than this.
Washingtonia filifera 8b -3°C -9°C ?  
Washingtonia robusta 8b -3°C -5.6°C ? Will tolerate cold damp better than W. filifera.

Palms listed in their probable order of cold-hardiness

1 Rhapidophyllum hystrix
2 Sabal minor
3 Sabal x texensis
4 Trachycarpus nanus
5 Trachycarpus takil
6 Nannorrhops (Silver)
7 Butia archeri
8 Butia bonnettii
9 Sabal palmetto
10 Trachycarpus fortunei
11 Trachycarpus wagnerianus
12 Trachycarpus princeps
13 Brahea nari
14 Jubaea chilensis
15 Trithrinax campestris
16 Brahea armata
17 Trachycarpus oreophilus
18 Trachycarpus sp. (Naga Hills)
19 Butia capitata
20 Butia yatay
21 Butia eriospatha
22 Brahea moorei
23 Brahea decumbens
24 Sabal etonia
25 Nannorrhops ritchiana
26 Chamaerops humilis 'cerifera'
27 Chamaerops humilis
28 Chamaerops humilis 'Vulcano'
29 Sabal mexicana
30 Sabal uresana
31 Chamaedorea microspadix
32 Phoenix theophrastii
33 Phoenix canariensis
34 Washingtonia filifera
35 Serenoa repens
36 Phoenix acaulis
37 Phoenix loureiri var. humilis
38 Phoenix dactylifera
39 Sabal rosei
40 Livistona chinensis
41 Brahea edulis
42 Chamaedorea radicalis
43 Corypha lecomtei
44 Corypha umbraculifera
45 Phoenix hanceana (loureiroi var. loureiroi)
46 Parajubaea torallyi var. torallyi
47 Trachycarpus latisectus
48 Trachycarpus martianus var. nepal
49 Trithrinax acanthocoma
50 Dypsis onilahensis
51 Dypsis heteromorpha
52 Dypsis pumila
53 Hyphaene petersiana
54 Rhapis excelsa
55 Rhapis humilis
56 Rhapis multifida
57 Dypsis ankaizinensis
58 Dypsis decipiens
59 Brahea berlandieri
60 Brahea brandegeei
61 Dypsis acuminum
62 Dypsis catatiana
63 Dypsis coursii
64 Dypsis cutisii
65 Dypsis andrianatonga
66 Dypsis tsaratananensis
67 Dypsis bonsai
68 Dypsis oreophila
69 Dypsis ambositrae
70 Dypsis montana
71 Dypsis baronii
72 Dypsis oropedionis
73 Guihaia argyrata
74 Guihaia grossefibrosa
75 Erythea loretensis
76 Juania australis
77 Livistona australis
78 Phoenix sylvestris
79 Sabal domingensis
80 Syagrus comosa
81 Syagrus quinquefaria
82 Washingtonia robusta
83 Chamaedorea ernesti-augustii
84 Parajubaea torallyi var. microcarpa
85 Dypsis heterophylla
86 Dypsis linearis
87 Dypsis andapae
88 Dypsis thermarum
89 Dypsis occidentalis
90 Dypsis sahanofensis
91 Dypsis fibrosa
92 Dypsis nodifera
93 Brahea aculeata
94 Brahea nitida
95 Chamaedorea klotzschiana
96 Livistona decipiens
97 Livistona drudei
98 Ravenea nana
99 Ravenea glauca
100 Ravenea dransfieldii
101 Trachycarpus martianus var. khasia hills
102 Trithrinax schizophylla
103 Arenga engleri
104 Arenga micrantha
105 Acrocomia aculeata 'totai'
107 Acoelorrhaphe wrightii
108 Corypha utan
109 Attalea cohune
110 Linospadix monostachya
111 Livistona saribus
112 Chamaedorea plumosa
113 Ravenea sambiranensis
114 Ravenea madagascariensis
115 Phoenix hanceana (loureiroi var. loureiroi)
116 Trithrinax brasiliensis
117 Chamaedorea elegans
118 Ceroxylon alpinum
119 Allagoptera campestris
120 Brahea dulcis
121 Butia paraguayensis
122 Phoenix reclinata
123 Pritchardia affinis
124 Latania lontaroides
125 Ravenea louvelii
126 Marojejya insignis
127 Ravenea robusta
128 Chamaedorea seifrizii
129 Syagrus romanzoffiana
130 Rhopalostylis sapida
131 Lytocaryum weddellianum
132 Lytocaryum hoehnei
133 Howea forsteriana
134 Howea belmoreana
135 Lepidorrhachis mooreana
136 Attalea speciosa
137 Chamaedorea cataractarum
138 Dypsis jumelleana
139 Dypsis lokohoensis
140 Dypsis bernierana
141 Dypsis concinna
142 Dypsis louvelii
143 Dypsis marojejyi
144 Dypsis cookei
145 Dypsis mcdonaldiana
146 Dypsis lutea
147 Dypsis tsaravoasira
148 Dypsis utilis
149 Dypsis spicata
150 Chamaedorea metallica
151 Chuniophoenix hainanensis
152 Chuniophoenix nana
153 Copernicia alba
154 Beccariophoenix madagascariensis
155 Borassus aethiopium
156 Dypsis hildebrandtii
157 Dypsis lanceolata
158 Raphia farinifera
159 Ravenea robusta
160 Calamus inermis
161 Caryota maxima 'Himalaya'
162 Marojejya darianii
162 Phoenix rupicola
163 Licuala peltata var. sumawongii
163 Borassus flabellifer
164 Bismarckia nobilis
165 Archontophoenix cunninghamiana
166 Allagoptera arenaria
167 Ceroxylon quindiuense
168 Chamaedorea stolonifera
169 Coccothrinax argentata
170 Coccothrinax barbadensis
171 Parajubaea cocoides
172 Caryota obtusa
173 Caryota ochlandra
174 Caryota urens
175 Phoenix roebelinii
176 Wallichia caryotoides
177 Wettinia maynensis
178 Wallichia densiflora
179 Caryota gigas
180 Archontophoenix alexandrae
181 Elaeis guineensis
182 Euterpe edulis
183 Latania loddigessii
184 Normanbya normanbyi
185 Dypsis decaryi
186 Wodyetia bifurcata