Cliff Date Palm

Phoenix rupicola

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Phoenix (FEE-niks) (Info)
Species: rupicola (roo-pee-koh-luh) (Info)



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

20-30 ft. (6-9 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

10-12 ft. (3-3.6 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:


Corte Madera, California

Hayward, California

Los Angeles, California

Santa Barbara, California

Palm Bay, Florida

Port Charlotte, Florida

Harlingen, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 14, 2012, kostheos from Athens,
Greece (Zone 9b) wrote:

I am entirely sure of the reason for the yellowing. It is exessive sun during summer. It can not tolerate without any yellowing full scorching sun in warm mediterranean climates. I grow one under light shade provided by the fronds of the next growing Phoenix dactylifera. Once I pruned latter one during summer, the rupicola instantly started to yellow its fronds, despite the increase in watering. As soon as summer ended and weather bacame cooler and more humid, it returned to the normal green color. This plant does not tolerate full sun and hot temps with low air humidity, it hardly grows during my summer.


On Apr 18, 2011, billowen from Port Charlotte, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

Just planted a small one, hard to find around S.W. Florida for some reason. I've heard this one is the least cold tolerant of all the date palms. If it grows like my Sylvester Palm, I'll be very happy.


On Dec 13, 2009, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

So far the potted plant has done very well. I think it needs a very even supply of moisture to avoid discolored fronds. Mine in summer was getting a little off colored until I put a saucer under long as there is some water in the saucer the palm has stayed a rich,glossy green. Night temperatures in the low 30's havent bothered it. I can see that this isnt as good a water saver palm as most Phoenix sp. As usual,the more exotic looking, the more needy the plant compared to its bretheren.
At the least its about the right size for small to average yards.


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

This is probably one of the most tropical of the Phoenix palms, and the most tropical looking of them. It has soft, droopy leaves with hardly any spines at the leaf bases (though they're still there, so careful). It has the greenest leaves of the Phoenix and is a very graceful tree. I have had some trouble growing this species- it's a bit touchy in zone 9b and it's quite slow, too.... but it does grow here very well for some people. In southern California this Phoenix is the most prone to yellowing of all the Phoenix, looking like it's suffering from severe potasium deficiency. Whether or not that is actually the case, I don't know. Sometimes P canariensis will show the same yellowing, but rarely. In fact, the yellowing is so prevelant, that it's sometimes used as an identifying fac... read more