How Do You Trim a King Palm?


Quick Answer

A king palm, like other types of palm trees, requires very little maintenance and pruning. Because of the risks of damage from improper pruning, the tree should only be pruned to remove dead leaves that are hazardous to either the plant or people and structures below.

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Full Answer

Although some palm trees retain coats of dead leaves, the king palm sheds its leaves when they die to make room for replacements. In the event that a dead leaf does not naturally fall away on its own, it should be removed gently with sterilized shears to avoid spreading fungi or diseases. The leaf should be cut from below to stop its weight from tearing the bark. A cherry picker or similar type of lifting equipment should be used to reach the leaves, as climbing up the trunk risks creating permanent damage to the trunk.

The primary maintenance risk faced by king palms is over pruning, which may seriously damage the tree. Pruning healthy leaves from a palm does not encourage new growth. Rather, it limits the amount of nutrients the palm tree receives from the sun. Because king palms easily shed their dead leaves, they are unlikely to develop pest problems or become a fire hazard.

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