Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Washingtonia
Washingtonia x filibusta

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Washingtonia (Washing-ton-ee-a) (Info)
Species: x filibusta (fil-ih-BUS-ta) (Info)

One member has or wants this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Unknown - Tell us

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us

Grown for foliage

Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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4 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Cali_Boy137 On Jul 18, 2014, Cali_Boy137 from Vancouver, WA wrote:

It Grows Great in Vancouver, WA and I've Seen big and tall ones in Portland, OR i saw one in portland that was like 130 feet! :)

Positive SuburbanNinja80 On Apr 10, 2012, SuburbanNinja80 from Plainfield, IN (Zone 6a) wrote:

Something I noticed. California fan palm has green thorns as the Mexican fan palm has red thorns. The hybrid I have orange thorns. Most say I love this palm. I wonder it can reproduce to a california fan palm that I also own. The joy of cold hardy palms.

Positive haleybug1109 On Mar 5, 2012, haleybug1109 from Bremerton, WA wrote:

I have a Washingtonia Filibusta growing outside in my Bremerton Wa.(Seattle area) yard. This palm has been in the ground 2 winters now with only minor damage. This particular plant I have is 6 feet tall 4 1/2 trunk feet and has frond color of Robusta (green green not olive green) and frond shape of Filifera and has had only minor damage at 14F. Our winters here are our wet season and tolerates this fairly well and grows back quite well in the summer with the dry season and the low humidity.

Positive NorthSC On Jun 12, 2011, NorthSC from North, SC (Zone 8a) wrote:

Washingtonia FiliBusta hybrid grows here without protection and is completely defoliated (browned) but grows back in spring and it starts growing as early as February, but it may get in trouble or even be killed on colder winters. I have one dead, but I suspect it may have been killed by voles?

Will try W. filifera from now on, probably a good one for this area too as long as its kept in a well draining soil.

If anyone in mid SC has flifera growing in ground successfully I'd like to see if possible. I know only one W. filifera (or is it a hybrid?), which is very large and grows right next to Hwy 378 which is a Sunset Boulevard between Columbia and Lexington, SC.

I think SC needs plenty of Wash. Filiferas as they should do well here and would beautify the place much.

UPDATE: I wish everyone would describe hardiness of a plant in several stages: while a seedling, while a young plant, a larger plant but still without much trunk and then an adult plant. This same palm as a small 1 footer can get damaged by temperatures that are much warmer than 15F. Make it a new default standard and lots of new research.

Some plants while small can get killed by 32F or below (or above), yet some can withstand down to 20F more or less as seedlings. This kind of research and info is important to provide along hardiness for adults palms. Giving hardiness info (USDA zones and temperatures) just for adult plants is not enough to get the entire picture.

Mine as seedlings in a community box outdoors got exposed to 20F and a lot of them survived just fine the winter of 2012-2013.
Yet the winter of 2013-2014 is another story - temps went down to 12F and a lot of palms in all kinds of sizes got damaged,

2014 UPDATE: My W. filibusta hybrid with ~1 1/2 ft. trunk in a 45 gallon pot survived (central spear and some fronds are a bit green at the very center with the spear NOT pulling, which gives hope) all winter outdoors while the 12 ft. OA W. robustas all seem to be dead.

Neutral ineedacupoftea On Jan 20, 2006, ineedacupoftea from Denver, CO wrote:

This is a hybrid of W. filifera and W. robusta. Just what odds that an ironic and comical name like "Washingtonia x filibusta" would come to be, we will never know. Perhaps the same reason that a peice of toast always lands on the floor jam-side down; landing jam-side up only when a dog is nearby to eat it before one can retreive it. The palm is said to be somewhat drought tolerant and rumored to be hardier than both parents. Relatively new to cultivation; coming to a Senate near you...


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anniston, Alabama
Mobile, Alabama
Palm Springs, California
Hollywood, Florida
Chicago, Illinois
Plainfield, Indiana
Portland, Oregon
North, South Carolina
Houston, Texas
Bremerton, Washington
Vancouver, Washington

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