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5 Good Reasons to Plant Pindo Palm

pindo palm

Pindo palm (Butia capitata) is a low-maintenance and cold-hardy palm tree. Sometimes pindo palm is also called jelly palm or wine palm, because its fruit are used to make jelly or wine.

It is native to South America, specifically Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay. Pindo palms grows quite slowly 12-24 inches (30-60 cm) per year, reaching maturity in 5 to 10 years.

#1 Excellent Specimen Plant

Pindo palms grow 15 feet (4.5 m) tall and 10 feet (3 m) wide. Characterized by its heavy gray trunk and beautiful long arching feather-like leaves, that can be green and blue-ish gray.

Jelly palms will add a tropical feel to your outdoor living space, or garden. It is also possible to grow jelly palms in containers and indoors! They look particularly attractive near water.

Pindo Palms Are Around For a Long Time

These palms are known to survive for 80 years.

Young pindo palms
Young jelly palms

#2 Delicious Fruit

Jelly palms grow bright orange fruit in large clusters, which hang from the tree. Sometimes these fruits are called ‘pindo dates.’ At the end of the spring, small orange-red or yellow flowers start appearing on the tree, which will turn into pindo dates.

Pindo fruit is oval-shaped, having about 1-inch diameter. Fruit can be eaten fresh or pureed and will last for about a week in the refrigerator. Pindo dates are often used to make jelly or wine and are a good source of beta-carotene.

The taste of pindo palm fruit can be described as tart, juicy and sweet. Some people say it tastes somewhat like a pineapple. Be mindful where to plant pindo palms, these fruits start dropping from the tree and will make a mess.

pindo dates
A cluster of pindo dates Source: Starr

#3 Low-maintenance

Jelly palm does not need to be pruned or paid attention to. Sometimes the plant may run out of nutrients. In that case feed it quality palm fertilizer twice year, during growing season. It will prefer full sun, but can tolerate partial shade.

It is also tolerant of draughts, and saltwater and is not picky about soils. Wine palms can grow in sandy or clay soils. However, when growing a very young pindo palm, it will need to be watered the first two years.

#4 No Diseases or Pests

Wine palms are not bothered by any known major diseases or pests. Although it may need micronutrients sometimes as mentioned before. Pindo palm is susceptible to root rot, so do not overwater it. This is more of a problem when growing in clay soil.

Mature pindo palm Source: Ettore

#5 It Is a Cold-hardy Palm

Mature jelly palms can tolerate cold temperatures, as low as 5 °F
(-15 °C). You can enjoy the shade of a palm tree without having to live in a hot climate! Wine palms can grow in USDA Hardiness zones 7b to 11. It is one of the most cold-hardy palms available!

Conclusion

Pindo palm is a terrific specimen plant with its attractive blue-grayish or green foliage. It also bears delicious fruit, is low-maintenance, has no major pest or disease problems, and can handle freezing temperatures.

Are pindo palms poisonous?

No, these palm trees are completely non-toxic to animals and humans.

How much should small pindo palms be watered?

Water every day for 2-3 weeks, every other day for 2-3 weeks, and then 3 times a week until the plant is two years old. However, this is a rule of thumb not a rule, the soil should be kept moist but not soggy.

How long do pindo palms live?

Pindo palms can live up to 80 years.

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