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Rhapis Species, Finger Palm, Jade Empress, Slender Lady Palm

Rhapis humilis

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rhapis (RAY-pis) (Info)
Species: humilis (HEW-mil-is) (Info)
Synonym:Rhapis multifida


Tropicals and Tender Perennials


Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Tucson, Arizona

Los Angeles, California

San Marino, California

Tarzana, California

Topanga, California

Visalia, California

Brandon, Florida

Pensacola, Florida

Port Saint Lucie, Florida

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 9, 2012, scubamom from Gregory, TX wrote:

Be aware that Rhapis humilis is not happy in Texas and hates the long, hot summers. They do well in winter here, but quickly lose stamina in the hot months.

Best to enjoy them in California where they love the mild year around temperatures.


On Apr 3, 2010, Darkman from Pensacola, FL wrote:

This palm survived unscathed the 2010 winter in Pensacola, FL which included a low of 19.3 and nearly two weeks of below frezing every night. No damage of any kind. It was unprotected and living within ten feet of my Roebelini which is toast.

2011 winter update June 4, 2011

Not the plants fault but mine. In January in preparation for a hard freeze I watered the bed that this plant was in and forgot to turn off the sprinkler. My plant was totally covered in ice. It looked ok after the thaw but eventually all trunks experienced spear pull. As I write this in the first week of June there is some hope. One trunk has pushed a new spear. There is a new trunk coming up in the clump. Lastly about two foot away from the clump two new trunks are pushing up. I have not r... read more


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

This is the Rhapis species grown in all the local botanical gardens as showpieces are against architecture as it is very sun tolerant and elegant. Unlike the more common Lady Palm (Rhapis excelsa) this one doesn't yellow in full sun. It also differs in that it grows much taller, has more finely split leaves and the leaflets end in points rather than premorse ('cut' as though with pinking shears). Also it is one of the few palms that only have males- no females are known. So this one can only be propagated by division. All other species of Rhapis can also be propogated from seed germination, though usually most are similarly divided. It is a suckering palm that spreads slowly, usually 6"-12" at the most from the original stem, until a tall, clumping palm is created. This species is of... read more