How to Prune a Sabal Palm. Sabal palmetto (also known as Sabal Palm or Cabbage Palm) is a medium sized palm tree, growing an average of 20 to 40 feet in height, though it can reach to 90 feet tall. The trunk of a sabal palm varies between being rough and fibrous, with old split leaf bases (called “boots”) which form an overlapping...
Sabal palmetto (also known as Sabal Palm or Cabbage Palm) is a medium sized palm tree, growing an average of 20 to 40 feet in height, though it can reach to 90 feet tall. The trunk of a sabal palm varies between being rough and fibrous, with old split leaf bases (called "boots") which form an overlapping pattern, or without this characteristic. Sabal palms are transplanted easily and prefer full sun to partial shade. Palm trees are low maintenance plants. When pruning a sabal palm and other palms, care should be taken to avoid damaging the tree.
Things You'll Need
Remove only brown and yellow fronds (leaves) using a pole trimmer. Wear safety glasses and gloves. Prune the stems away from the truck. Do not remove green fronds.
Remove any flowers, seeds or berries from the tree so energy will be conserved for tolerating any green leaf loss during pruning.
Pull away loose boots around the trunk by hand. Do not attempt to cut old trunk boots off with a saw because the trunk can be damaged easily.
Tips & Warnings
Use well cleaned and sterilized tools to avoid introducing disease when pruning.
Use mulch around the trunk base to cut down on weeds and eliminate the the need for weed eaters which can damage the tree.
Save old fronds to add to compost or brush piles.
Never cut the top off a palm tree because it will not recover.
To avoid trunk damage, do not use cleats or other tree climbing devices.
If in doubt about your ability to safely prune the tree, consult a professional.
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