Home Palm Trees Growing and Caring for Trachycarpus fortunei: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

Growing and Caring for Trachycarpus fortunei: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

by Gregory
3 minutes read

Growing and Caring for the Trachycarpus fortunei: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginners


The Trachycarpus fortunei, commonly known as the Chusan palm, windmill palm, or Nepalese fan palm, is an exotic and hardy palm tree that adds a touch of tropical flair to any garden or urban space. With its lush, fan-shaped leaves and ability to withstand cold temperatures, it’s a popular choice for gardeners in various climates. This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the essential information you need to successfully grow and care for your Trachycarpus fortunei.

Choosing the Right Location:

  • Sunlight: Trachycarpus fortunei prefers full sun to dappled shade.
  • Soil: It thrives in moist but well-drained, fertile soil.
  • Shelter: Protect your palm from strong winds, which can damage its leaves.

Planting Your Trachycarpus fortunei:

  • Dig a square hole that’s twice the width of the root ball.
  • Enrich the soil with compost.
  • Place the root ball in the hole and backfill with soil, firming it around the base.
  • Water deeply after planting.

Ongoing Care:

  • Watering: Water your Trachycarpus fortunei regularly, especially during hot and dry periods.
  • Fertilizing: Fertilize your palm once a year in spring with a balanced palm fertilizer.
  • Pruning: Remove any lower fronds that turn brown.

Winter Protection:

  • In cold climates, Trachycarpus fortunei may need winter protection.
  • Wrap the crown of the palm with straw and the trunk with horticultural fleece.
  • Mulch around the base with straw or compost.

Troubleshooting Common Problems:

  • Height Control: If you’re concerned about the height of your Trachycarpus fortunei, you can grow it in a pot to restrict its roots.
  • Dying Palms: Cold damage is a common cause of palm tree death. Protect your palm from frost and freezing temperatures.

Buying Advice:

  • Consider the size and location where you want to plant your Trachycarpus fortunei before purchasing.
  • You can find Trachycarpus fortunei at garden centers, online retailers, and specialist nurseries.

Additional Tips:

  • Trachycarpus fortunei is tolerant of pollution, making it suitable for urban gardens.
  • Choose a dwarf or slow-growing variety if you have limited space.
  • Keep an eye out for changes in foliage color or loose spears, which could indicate cold damage or rot.


Growing and caring for a Trachycarpus fortunei is relatively easy with the right knowledge and care. By following the tips outlined in this guide, you can enjoy the beauty and exotic charm of this hardy palm tree for many years to come.

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