King Palm, Bangalow Palm, Piccabeen Palm

Archontophoenix cunninghamiana

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Archontophoenix (ar-kon-toh-FEE-niks) (Info)
Species: cunninghamiana (kun-ing-ham-ee-AY-nuh) (Info)



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


over 40 ft. (12 m)


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; germinate in vitro in gelatin, agar or other medium

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


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

Sahuarita, Arizona

Tempe, Arizona

Brentwood, California

Chowchilla, California

Garden Grove, California

Granite Bay, California

Hayward, California

La Verne, California

Los Altos, California

Martinez, California

Oceanside, California

Perris, California

Rancho Cucamonga, California

Reseda, California

Rialto, California

San Diego, California

San Francisco, California

Santa Ana, California

Santa Barbara, California (2 reports)

Simi Valley, California

Valley Center, California

Venice, California

Vincent, California

Visalia, California

Whittier, California

Boca Raton, Florida

Bonita Springs, Florida

Naples, Florida

Orlando, Florida

Port Charlotte, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida (2 reports)

Houston, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 4, 2015, IlhadoPico from Sao Roque do Pico
Portugal (Zone 11) wrote:

In January 2015 have planted what was sold to me as "Elegante-Solitaire" (Ptychosperma elegans) and now I was told it is Archontophoenix cunninghamiana instead (planted next to a house) about 4 ft. tall here on Pico island in the Azores (Earth's last paradise). Six months later it has grown one frond (lying on top of another frond) and strong wind has broken one of its fronds early on after planting. There's a new spear developed in the past 2-3 months that should become a new frond in the next month or so. It looks so far that this palm is growing one frond every 4-6 months or so. It's listed as fast growing by "The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms". I wouldn't say it is very fast growing, such as Washingtonia robusta, which I also planted in January and it has grown at least 6 new fronds... read more


On Aug 6, 2012, Palm1978 from Bonita Springs, FL wrote:

This easy grower is fairly uncommon in Southwest Florida, though it is more commonly planted than the A. Alexander. Seems to do better in partial shade as it can experience sunburn when temperatures are in the 90s. I conjecture that you need to special order this palm from the Homestead nurseries because I have yet to see it available at retail.


On May 11, 2011, CoconutFreak1 from Central Coast, NSW
Australia (Zone 10b) wrote:

Although most plantings of this palm look terrible, a well grown, sturdy Bangalow Palm can be quite attractive. They require high moisture and is best grown in shaded position, although they can tolerate full sun if given lots of water.


On Aug 4, 2010, AZJeff from Sahuarita, AZ (Zone 9a) wrote:

I just saw some 1 gal.size King palms at a garden center at one of the Target stores in my area. It was reduced in price to $3, so I bought one today. I have never seen them sold anywhere lately. I don't know how it will do here in southern Arizona,but I will try it. I already have a Majesty palm. The King palm looks similar in its fronds,but maybe in time it will look more different than the Majesty palm. I'm thinking it might do better in shade,as it looks like the the hot sun here,during our late spring and summer months may burn the leaves. I have a huge pot,that holds over 10 gallons of dirt with nothing in it except a small Meyer lemon tree that's barely 2 inches tall that I will transplant somewhere else. The pot I intend to plant it in gets mid to afternoon sun. I won't plant it i... read more


On Jan 9, 2009, tempetreehugger from Tempe, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

I bought 5 king palms from Target stores.One survived.It's 3 ft. in height..It gets afternoon shade. It survived a 118 degree summer day..and a few frost..maybe this one will grow tall.


On Sep 24, 2007, leeboi76 from Sydney
Australia wrote:

These palms are native to SE Australia and are some of the most popular accent trees in use around Sydney and Brisbane. To give you an idea of the extent they are utilized you can buy a 2 ft specimen at Ikea for $2.50, this also demonstrates their growth speed. We have 2 in the garden one 8 ft and the other 3 ft tall. This past winters low temp was 28 f and no damage was observed. Many gardeners have taken to planting Bangalow palms as they are natives with several bird/insect species using the blooms/fruits. This has resulted in less demand for washingtonia, queen palms and livistona. There is a town in New South Wales called "Bangalow" that is the Aboriginal word for this palm. Named as this tree covers the hillsides.


On Apr 9, 2006, scottstang from Palmdale, CA wrote:

I have seen this growing at one house in my area. This house has 3 maybe 4 growing under a canopy of queen palms. I myself have some in pot on my patio. It gets in the 20's here in winter.


On Feb 16, 2006, koolkatken from Auckland
New Zealand wrote:

The bangalow are grown a lot here in Auckland, NZ. In fact Auckland council is considering labelling them as a "pest" and outlawing them due to their ability aparently to spread so much. Now, that would be terrible- beautiful palms like these all % The bangalow grow faster it seems with brown trunks, while the King is slower, but tougher in the wind with a nice light grey/white trunk. My favourite.


On Sep 27, 2005, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

I have seen full grown ones in here in Hayward that were beauts.Dark green fronds,whitish, ringed trunks.They might be the best looking palms to grow in the Bay Area. Hard to get Kentias that lush of a green. I have noticed that they are not as common at the Home improvement stores like they used to be.They seem to have been replaced by Majesty palms.
EDIT 2007: Wouldn't you know it,the box stores have began selling them again -and at larger sizes. Unlike most plants, large King palms are worth the extra money. Adjusting to being planted in ground faster and making an almost instant impact. Mine took the 07 freeze very well-the largest with no frost damage even with a week of 32 ,more or less,temps.
A small trio also look perfect under the protection of a very large Scheffle... read more


On May 24, 2004, silverwolf359 from Antioch, CA wrote:

I live in the East Bay Area of San Francisco and have two small King Palms. I live in Zone 9B and they survive the winter here last year and our dry hot windy summers. They are in full shade, during the after noon. I had some King Palms in full sun ounce and they fried in the hot weather here. Hopefully, they will do well in the years to come.


On Dec 29, 2003, laspalmasdesign from Los Altos, CA wrote:

Here in the warmer areas of the SF Bay Area, King palms grow and look fantastic. I have 29 of them on my property in Los Altos ranging from 3' to 20' and they're about the easiest palms to grow. Just give them regular watering and feed them if you want but they are not fussy. We don't get those hot dry Santa Ana winds like they do in SoCal so the leaves don't get desicated and brown tipped. They seem to grow equally well in full sun and full shade.


On Jul 26, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

The King palm is probably the 5th most commonly planted palm in Southern California. Unfortunately it is rarely watered enough and most planting don't look all that great. But for general tropical look, it is the most commonly planted palm that gives that 'tropics' feel.

One of the things that separates the King Palm from other commonly planted palms is its crownshaft, the smooth, encompassing leaf bases that surround the trunk just below the leaves. It's is the crownshaft that makes this palm look so tropical, though the nice green color and ringed trunk add to that tropical look.

One of my complaints about kings, other than their being overplanted but poorly maintained, is they are weed factories. A happy, well watered king can produce thousands of new... read more