Cycas Species, Cycad, Fern Palm, Palm-Leaved Cycas, Queen Sago, Sago Palm

Cycas circinalis

Family: Cycadaceae
Genus: Cycas (SY-kas) (Info)
Species: circinalis (kir-KIN-ah-liss) (Info)
Synonym:Cycas circinalis var. angustifolia
Synonym:Cycas circinalis subsp. circinalis



Tropicals and Tender Perennials


Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Light Shade

Full Shade



Foliage Color:



15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


8-10 ft. (2.4-3 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)

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round in hardiness zone

Suitable for growing in containers

This plant is suitable for growing indoors


Seed is poisonous if ingested

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

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

Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:


Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Fallbrook, California(5 reports)

Hayward, California

Santa Barbara, California

Stockton, California

Thousand Oaks, California

Tulare, California

Cape Coral, Florida

Fort Myers, Florida

Lake Helen, Florida

Rincon, Georgia

Hana, Hawaii

Colfax, Louisiana

Kure Beach, North Carolina

Portland, Oregon

Grenoble, RhĂ´ne-Alpes

Leander, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 31, 2018, Sygot from Drachten,
Netherlands wrote:

According to an enployee of the Hortus botanicus in Haren (Groningen, the Netherlands) I have a Cycas circinalis. It has been actually quite a challenge to me to determine what the botanical name is of this plant. I obtained the plant about thirty years ago at the flower shop in our shopping mall as a mothers day gift. Of course my mother has taken proper care of the plant and at a certain time it produced two offsprings which we were able to isolate. One of them died and the other one grows in my home. My mother is 88, so in the end the original plant will also end up at my place. As it is a tropical plant, it grows indoors most of the time, but mine I put outside for the first time, because it's such a crazy hot and dry summer in Western Europe this year. This year I repotted the plant, ... read more


On Dec 14, 2012, marksgrdn from Stockton, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

I bought my Sago about 4 yrs ago after having visited a friend of mine in Austin, Tx. His was on the patio just existing. Filtered sunlight, and watered when he remember to go out and do so.
Well, I thought i'd give it a go ! It's doing very well. Had to get used to is watering needs. Very fussy at first, and now I know when and how much to water. It gets all day shade then full sun from about 430pm to sundown. I know, its the worst sun, but its thriving very well. Ive never trimed it, but on occasion some of the needles burn. I think it would die or at least hate me if I ever chose to move it from its area of the patio to which it has made it its home.


On Aug 27, 2012, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

As my photo says..five years of no flush in ground and in part sun,and the plant still clung to life with a will to live. Dug up and re-potted,then placed in full sun-it flushed small,tiny stunted fronds last year.This year it has flushed again..two years in a row. The second flush fronds are much smaller then average for this Cycad but its going in the right direction! And the fronds had the right form.

I even fertilized it..I never thought that day would come.

btw,When it was in a tropical greenhouse,it would flush 3 sometimes 4 times in a year. An easy cycad for greenhouses or sunrooms.


On Aug 1, 2011, Beach_Barbie from Kure Beach, NC (Zone 9a) wrote:

This is hardier than the zone report claims. It's easily hardy in zone 8 and with covering in the Winter zone 7.


On Aug 29, 2008, hettibot from Gampaha,
Sri Lanka wrote:

I live in Srilanka. In Srilanka, the tender leaves of Cycas circinalis are used in curries and soups after boiling in water for abuout half an hour. When boiled the toxic effect is removed.
Dry seeds are grinded and steamed the flour before use
We make a kind of bread called MADU PITTU.


On Feb 26, 2005, Equilibrium wrote:

A native to India, the Cycas circinalis or Queen Sago Palm is actually a Cycad and not a Palm.

Although this plant does not currently appear on any lists as poisonous, it appears its seed may be toxic to animals as well as humans yet I noted an entry in which some palm seed was actually ground and used in a bread meal.

The Queen Sago has dark green attractive foliage and is slow growing. It does not branch as does the King Sago. Both appear to be very susceptible to scale so probably not a great plant for North America unless you like to spend lots of money maintaining its health with little or no guarantees the plant will survive.

Starting sagos from seed

“Often, not many seeds produce new plants. But if you wish to try, plant... read more


On Aug 16, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Cycas circinalis is NOT the same is C. rumphii, although most plants identified as C. circinalis are really C. rumphii or something similar. The true C. circinalis is actually a pretty rare plant, with a much smaller habit and smaller leaflets and leaves than the massive C. rumphii commonly used in landscaping in the more tropical areas of the world. However for now, we will just keep this identification as is since 99% of the world knows this plant by this name, incorrectly or not.

This is another common landscape cycad, as well as a common potted plant in the warmer areas of the world. It's cold hardiness, as well as its tolerance for hot summer sun do not match the much more common Cycas circinalis or Sago Palm. But it is s... read more


On Sep 29, 2002, IslandJim from Keizer, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

The queen sago is larger and softer than the king sago. The fronds are often 6' to 7' long and quite feathery. It sets seeds a bit differenty than the king, also; they cling to long, exposed ribbon-like structures. The seeds are green and about the size of a goose egg when ripe.