Living in the subtropics affords us the luxury of growing hundreds of different palm trees. There are about a dozen native palms, and then the rest are exotics brought here over the years by plant explorers such as David Fairchild. David worked for the United States Department of Agriculture and his body of work was so impressive a friend of his, Robert Montgomery had a botanical garden named after him. That is how Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden got its name.
Over the years I have written some articles about the garden for Examiner.com such as these:
Fairchild Tropical Garden Chocolate Festival
Fairchild Tropical Garden Mango Festival
Fairchild Tropical Garden special offers
At Fairchild Garden, there are over 700 different kinds of palms! Most big box nurseries only sell the most common palms, therefor, if you want special ones you must hunt specialty nurseries or buy them at Fairchild when they have their palm sales.
Here is an article and slide show of gorgeous palms planted in landscapes in South Florida.
Fabulous Florida Palms
I have many different palms in my garden, both native and exotic. I like the shade they provide for my understory tropicals. I like that they do not have harmful root systems so can be planted closer to the house than a large tree. It is nice planting ones that prune themselves, meaning their fronds come down by themselves when dead. Other palm fronds hang from the tree and you need a pole saw to remove them.
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