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Panama Hat Plant, Carludovica Palm

Carludovica palmata

Family: Cyclanthaceae
Genus: Carludovica (kar-lew-doh-VY-kuh) (Info)
Species: palmata (pahl-MAY-tuh) (Info)



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

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

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)


8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

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

Seed Collecting:

Remove fleshy coating on seeds before storing


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

Big Pine Key, Florida

Miami, Florida

Naples, Florida

Winona, Mississippi

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 19, 2011, rf6824 from Winona, MS wrote:

I just uploaded a picture of my plant. Since I am in zone 7 this plant can not be planted outside. I have had it in a pot for several years and it has bloomed as you can see in the picture. The bloom looks like white spaghetti. I have just recently discovered what the plant is. I purchased it in Florida some years back as a triangle palm and soon discovered that that was not what it is. I first kept it in the sun and discovered that it liked shade, and it has done better since then. I bring it in our plant room each winter where it has bright light and temp. 60 C or above.


On Jan 25, 2010, tomtrump from Miami, FL wrote:

Panama Hat Plant/Carludovica palmata planted in December, 2008, in Miami, FL. from 20 gallon cont. at approx. 4-6 ft. hgt.
Experienced record low temperatures Jan. 2010, 32 degrees with wind chills into the mid-20s, above ground foliage destroyed and since removed. Does anyone have knowledge concerning possible regrowth from roots?


On Aug 20, 2008, JoseMaria from Ciudad Neily,
Costa Rica wrote:

Origin: Central America, north of South America
Carludovica grows to 4 meters, looks like a palm, but has no trunk.
It is not a palm botanicaly speaking.
The flowers are like a bunch of white spagettis, the fruit is green on the outside and bright red inside. Seeds are very small, and birds eat the fruits and disperse the seeds.
Easy to reproduce by suckers and seeds.. Can be planted in pots .
Is used to make Panama hats.


On Aug 18, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

A very palm-like plant but with cylindindrical petioles (pretty uncommon in the palm world)- makes huge, densely packed clumps of plant- likes tons of water. Commonly planted landscape plant in tropics.