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Wasowski, Sally and Andy
Rhapidophyllum hystrix (Pursh) H. Wendl. & Drude ex Drude
Needle palm, Blue palmetto
USDA Symbol: rhhy
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Needle palm is an armed shrub, rarely more than 6 ft. tall, with erect or spreading stems from a short trunk. The leaf sheaths have long, needle-like, stiff and sharp spines. The fruit, a red drupe, is preceded by a short, dense inflorescence.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Shrub Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug
AL , FL , GA , MS , SC Native Distribution:
C. GA, s. to c. FL, AL & MS Native Habitat:
Swamps; wet to mesic woods & hammocks; dry rocks USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement:
Part Shade Soil Description:
Various wet to dry soils. Conditions Comments: Needle
palm is slow growing and adaptable. It can be used as a ground cover or ornamental specimen, and has proven tolerant of parking lot conditions.
PropagationDescription: Not Available
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
- Picayune, MSGeorgia Native Plant Society
- Atlanta, GA
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Record Modified: 2010-04-17
Research By: TWC Staff