Old Man Palm, Thatch Palm

Coccothrinax crinita

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Coccothrinax (koh-koh-THRY-naks) (Info)
Species: crinita (krin-EE-tuh) (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


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


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:

Sun to Partial Shade


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

Bloom Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us


Grown for foliage



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

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

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Thousand Oaks, California

Big Pine Key, Florida

Boca Raton, Florida

Brandon, Florida

Cape Coral, Florida

Loxahatchee, Florida (2 reports)

Marathon, Florida

Mulberry, Florida

Naples, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Satellite Beach, Florida

Venice, Florida (2 reports)

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 18, 2013, Frenchbb from Indian Harbour Beach, FL wrote:

We live on the beach in central FL. We have an old man that is about 12 - 15 years old, and he is beautiful! We had our 1st blooms 2 yrs ago, this is our 3rd yr. this year we have real seeds! We had to invent a way to keep the squirrels off as they kept eating the seeds. Our tree started to shoot out seed shoots around late June early July. We have about 6 shoots this year. Only 3 or 4 kept their seeds. Of those they all have just a sparse amount of seeds. This is now mid-August and they are getting to be the size of big plump grapes and starting to turn purple. Should we pick deep purple seeds or wait til they fall on the ground, and hope we beat the squirrels to them? Once we have the seeds off the tree, what is best way to grow new palm? Germinate the seed or put directly into pots? If ... read more


On Jul 18, 2011, islandgirl37 from Marathon, FL (Zone 11) wrote:

One of my favorite palms. I had one that had grown to around 12' and it got scale down in the crown. By the time I noticed it, it was too late, the bud was damaged and it didn't make it. It was heartbreaking watching it perish.

We went to Botanics in Homestead and walked down muddy berms(it had rained the night before) with hundreds of Old Man palms and found an amazing one that stood out from the others. A hard freeze was predicted for Homestead the next day and I wanted to get it before the freeze hit them. The rain had ended, the front was just passing as we chose it.

It's been planted about 8' from the open ocean for over 7 years. It has had salt spray all over it and even salt water, crazy winds and it is doing great. It is also my male dog's favorite p... read more


On Nov 16, 2004, jungleboy_fl from Naples, FL wrote:

Undemanding and easy in south FL, this is a great palm for smaller gardens. As with most of the Cuban palms, this species is accustomed to hot humid summers, and dry warm winters. Growth is painfully slow at first, then moderate as it matures. I've found with adequate water and fertilization, I get 8 fronds per summer. These can be quite expensive, especially since they seem to be popular at high-end retail nurseries. Out of all my palms, this is certainly not the rarest, but often, the most admired by locals. Highly recommended.


On Sep 29, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is a great palm for tropical areas of the world, and, though it also performns well in some temperate areas, like Southern California, it is SLOW! There are two varieties of this palm, the normal, and one call 'brevicrina', a 'miniature' form. Both are very well represtented in the Fairchild tropical gardens in Miami. My personal experience with this plant is that, aside from slow, it is pretty care free and does well in both shady and sunny conditions with an average amount of water.

This is called the old man palm because of it's unique fibre enveloping the trunk and haning down, making it look a bit like a big beard. It als makes this otherwise narrow-stemmed palm look bulky and stout. However, I refer to it as an old man's palm... since only an old man can show... read more