Palm trees grow naturally in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Louisiana, Texas, Arizona, California and Hawaii. These are the only places in the United States where palm trees grow native to the surrounding environment.
Hawaii has 21 different types of palm species – more than any other state. North Carolina is the most northerly state where natural palms can be found. In the United States, 41 types of palm trees can be found growing.
Palm trees are a source of a variety of food, drinks and other resources. Coconuts and dates are both derived from the palm tree. Palm oil is a common ingredient in many products, being found in both food and beauty products. Hearts of palm, sago and palm wine are all derived from the palm tree and are consumed all over the world. Coir is a fibrous material taken from the outer shell of coconuts that is used to make rope, brushes, mattresses and doormats.
Many palm species have become endangered due to human activity and the spread of cities and farms. The harvesting of hearts of palm is also dangerous to the palm's survival, as collecting it from the core of the tree kills it. Nearly 100 types of palm species are in danger of becoming extinct, and it is thought that nine species have recently died out.