Butiagrus Hybrid, Mule Palm

X Butiagrus nabonnandii

Family: Arecaceae (ar-ek-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: X Butiagrus (bew-tee-AG-rus) (Info)
Species: nabonnandii
Synonym:Butia capitata x Syagrus romanzoffiana
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

over 40 ft. (12 m)


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

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



Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Blooms repeatedly

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Enterprise, Alabama

Foley, Alabama

Orange Beach, Alabama

Tucson, Arizona

Granite Bay, California

Los Angeles, California

Mckinleyville, California

Moreno Valley, California

San Marino, California

Thousand Oaks, California

Ventura, California

Willits, California

Brandon, Florida

Fernandina Beach, Florida

Fort Pierce, Florida

Gainesville, Florida

Lakeland, Florida

Loxahatchee, Florida

Niceville, Florida

Ocala, Florida

Palm Bay, Florida

Sarasota, Florida

Spring Hill, Florida

Savannah, Georgia

Plainfield, Indiana

Denham Springs, Louisiana

Carolina Beach, North Carolina

Kure Beach, North Carolina

Wilmington, North Carolina

Cayce, South Carolina

Summerville, South Carolina

Schertz, Texas

Friday Harbor, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 30, 2015, jkorman from Fernandina Beach, FL wrote:

In full sun, in an exposed area or under a heavy canopy this palm performs well in Northeast Florida. It over winters with very minimal cold damage.


On Apr 26, 2015, pniksch from Frisco, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Beautiful palm, but not as hardy as Butia capitata, which grow just fine here. I have lost a couple of these in 8a, (smaller ones, approx 5 ft tall without protection). I'm going to give it one more try, with some winter protection this.time, until it gets a bit bigger. Otherwise, I'm going to agree with earlier comments that this is a Z 9 or higher plant.


On Feb 3, 2014, Ivanos1982 from El Paso, NM wrote:

I also tried to grow this plant in my zone 8 area and it just lost its spear after a freeze of about 15 F one February night last year. It didnt even snow that year and rained like once. I live in the desert. It just went downhill from there and by summer all the leaves browned up and no new growth came out even by August after major "surgery". It was just rotten inside the bud. I think this plant is definetly more of a zone 9. I was experimenting and spent 100 bucks and it hurt. I bought a smaller one that I've kept outside protected from frost this year and it's doing fine, but temps havent dropped below 20 F so far here in El Paso, TX this winter yet. Hopefully it will make it.


On Apr 24, 2013, donnacreation from Sumter, SC (Zone 8a) wrote:

After doing tons of online research, I don't think the 'Mule' palm is cold hardy in my zone 8a garden. Although the past 2 winters have been mild, during a cold winter, temps in the mid to low teens, even 10f occasinally, are common and would at least defoliate a young Mule palm. The next time temps hit 10f-14f, I plan to contact some fellow SC gardeners who are growing this palm to find out if it survived.


On Nov 2, 2012, Mendopalmfarm from Willits, CA wrote:

I have 5 of these beauties the largest having 8' of trunk and starting to flower regularly. Probably hardy to 15 degrees. Has a queen like trunk but hairy like a butia. They are quite expensive and not very easy to find on the west coast. Especially large ones. I love the way they makey driveway look.


On Oct 16, 2011, ErikSJI from Friday Harbor, WA wrote:

There pretty easy to find in Florida. If you need one send me a message and I will be happy to help you track one down.


On Jun 23, 2011, SuburbanNinja80 from Plainfield, IN (Zone 6a) wrote:

I have Desired to make it a House palm and try a few outside in Zone 6a. I have to warn people check this palm every 3 to 5 mouths. This is a Very fast growing Palm. I love it for this Reason those. its looks like a Relaxed Pindo palm that's is Thornless.


On May 16, 2010, Joan from Belfield, ND (Zone 4a) wrote:

Also found listed as Butia capitata x Syagrus romanzoffiana


On Jul 26, 2009, fullsun007 from Gainesville, FL wrote:

I have 3 of these palms in my yard,. One is 4 year old palm and the other a 2 year old. I also purchased an excellent 7 gallon specimen mule palm online. The fronds have a lush green appearance more closely resembling the Queen in the cross while obtaining some of the curvaceousness from the Pindo. This past winter we had 2 nights with back to back lows of 21oF neither of my palms received any additional protection and they are growing fine in my zone 8B garden. For those gardeners looking to emulate the look of a Queen or even the "Coconut" but live too far north this palm might be worth a try. They are not cheap due to being cross pollinated by hand, but reportedly hardy to 14oF. There are 30-40 feet specimens both on the University of Florida campus and at the Kanapaha Botanical ... read more


On Dec 7, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is a great cross between two very hardy palms (Butia capitata female and Syagrus romanzoffiana pollen donor... though other Syagrus crosses have been successful, too). It is a fast grower, though sort of intermediate between the two parents (Syagrus, or Queen palm being a lot faster grower). It has some beefiness of the Butia with some arched leaves of the Butia, too. Generally, the leaves are usually quite green like the Queen palm (Butias tend to be bluish green). The adult plant has exceptional hardiness, able to withstand temps below 20F. It is also very wind and drought tolerant. This is a great palm for a large space, but is quite rare and expensive.

As one might expect with an intergeneric hybrid, these plants are extremely variable, not nearly as consisten... read more