King Palms are actually a group of species within the genus of Archontophoenix. As discussed below there are six different species in this genus and all are from Australia. There are differences between all of these species and this includes overall size and appearance, color of the crown shaft, the undersurface of the leaflets, seeds and flower traits.
From a landscape point of view, King palms are very popular and planted widely throughout the world. But, the most common species, Archontophoenix cunninghamiana, is the only species most gardeners and even some landscape architects are familiar with. When the gardener says "King Palm", it s the cunninghamiana that he s referring to. He may not even know there are five more types of King Palms.
Common name: Alexandra King Palm, Alexandra Palm, the Alex Palm Color: White or near white Height: 20 to 40 feet Difficulty level: Easy
Planting & Care
Sunlight: In areas of high humidity, all Archontophoenix tolerate full sun. But, where the air is more dry, full sun can result in some burn to the leaves. This is particularly apparent on the tips of leaflets where "tip burn" is often seen.
Soil: King Palms appreciate rich soil with good drainage. Supplementing the soil with organic material such as mulch, fir or redwood shavings or leaf matter is very appreciated. They can often tolerate heavy clay soil if not over-watered.
Water: Water your king palm at least once a week during the summer months, to keep the soil moist. Water less during cool or rainy weather.
Fertilizer: Fertilize king palm twice a year with a slow release fertilizer. Use a fertilizer labelled 15-5-15 or 12-4-2, as palms prefer a fertilizer ratio of 3 parts nitrogen, 1 part phosphate and 3 parts potassium.
Step 1 Add mycorrhizal fungi to the soil around your king palm.
These fungi provide your palm tree with essential nutrients and moisture.
Also, they can help your palm tree grow a more extensive root system.
Mycorrhizal fungi comes in a granular soil additive.
Step 2 Fertilize your king palm tree with a palm fertilizer.
Palm fertilizers contain micronutrients like manganese, magnesium, potassium, iron sulfate and copper sulfate, which are vital to a palm tree s survival.
Step 3 Water your palm sufficiently throughout the year.
Use a soaker hose to deliver water to your palm at a slow but steady rate.
This will allow sufficient penetration to the root system.
Palms should be watered twice a month during the summer and once every six weeks in the winter months.
Step 4 Prune off the dead fronds of your King palm with pruning shears.
Cut the fronds off an inch or two away from the trunk to prevent trunk damage.