Distance Between Palm Trees  – How Close Together Can You Plant Them?

Maintain an average distance of three to five feet between two palm plants. Also, make sure that you plant your palm trees at least six feet away from your house wall & other foundational structures.

Apart or Close To Plant Palm Trees

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If you hope to use Palm trees as hedge plants, keep them at least 4-5 feet apart from each other. But, if you are planting them around areas surrounding your house, you must ensure they are at least six feet away from structures like driveways, the building, gutters, etc. So, the decision on how far apart to plant palm trees depends on where your plants are located.


Even though you can closely plant your palm trees, sans any consideration for water competition and nutrition, a densely packed garden will look cluttered. On the contrary, a well-planned garden is visually appealing and makes it conducive for the palms to survive.


Moreover, if you are not careful with the space requirements, it will force some sun-loving palms to compete for light. Read below to understand the palms’ spacing requirements.


How Far Apart Should Palm Trees Be Planted?

Palm Trees Be Planted

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Typically the distance between two palm trees must be 3-5 feet. It also depends on the chosen palm species. The larger ones require more space. This spacing is imperative to ensure that the plant grows well and does not impede the home exit and entrance areas. But for an accurate space assessment, you must research the factors like:


  1. Canopy Cover
  2. Branch Width
  3. Potential Root Overgrowth


1. Spacing Between Two Palm Trees

On average, you must keep at least four to five feet distance between the two palm plants. Consider increasing this distance if your chosen palm variety spreads a lot.


2. Palm Tree Distance From The House

Leave around six feet distance from your house boundary walls before planting a palm tree. If you grow a palm tree around your house, it is also imperative to know what species it is. It affects how far apart do you plant palm trees.


Botanically speaking, the palms are an excellent addition to any yard or garden. They will bless you with a magnificent canopy of shade if offered the correct care and environment. Learning about the root growth path, the canopy diameter, and the palm’s length will help you determine the space you leave between the palms and your house.


How Much Space Do These Palm Tree Varieties Need?

Palm Tree Varieties

Robert Buchel/istockphoto

Below, we will discuss some prevalent palm varieties grown near the house and their spacing requirements:


A. Date Palm Tree Spacing – Unlike most other fruit plantations, date palms enjoy growing in a dispersed fashion. Thus, in a well-managed plantation, you must keep at least a 9 X 9 meters gap between the two date palms. So, there should not be more than 120 trees for every hectare.


B. Areca Palm Spacing –You must keep at least four feet gap between the areca palm and any structure like a driveway, house, or gutters. If growing as a hedge plantation, ensure a three to six feet gap between the two palms.


C. Pygmy Date Palm Planting Spacing –You must ensure there is at least three feet (but better if four to five feet) gap between the structure and individual Pygmy date palms.


D. Windmill Palm Spacing – You must keep at least a six to ten feet gap between two trees to prevent competition in nutrients and water if you aspire to grow multiple windmills.


If growing near a structure, ensure there is five feet gap from the house or any building. It will give the leaves ample space to fan out. How close together can you plant palm trees if grown in a row? Ideally, they must be six feet apart from one another.


E. Queen Palm Planting DistanceQueen Palms blow over in strong wind conditions as their root system is pretty weak compared to the other palm trees. Hence, you must keep them at least ten feet from the house. If you are growing them in a group, maintain a four to five feet gap between them.


F. Mule Palm Spacing –These palms have longer fronds. So, plant your mules at least four feet away from each other for them to grow well and look visually pleasing.


Why Is It Important To Consider The Spacing Between Palm Plants?

We have discussed how far apart to plant palm trees, but did it cross your mind why the spacing is so important? Here are some prominent reasons:


A. Water Access

Water Access



Palm trees grow in a tropical environment. Thus, you would not want your plant competing for water. When the roots are thirsty, they tend to spread across the soil, hunting for more water.


But, if you plant your palms too close to each other, some trees might become famished while others will survive. It is prominently because the extensive roots tend to extort all the water before others can absorb it.


Please know palms love water, and if you do not water it adequately, they will start showing signs of underwatering, like wilting and discoloration in the leaves. Hence, you must maintain a consistent and adequate space between the trees.


B. Spread length

Spread Length



Palms must have the space to let the fronds grow and spread to their optimal potential. Typically, the length of the leaves usually goes from 5-8 feet, depending on the conditions, particularly the sunlight they receive.


But, if you pack the palms close to each other, they will form a condensed frond cluster, which intervenes with the growth. You do not want that. Hence, space the plants properly to access ample sun and grow.


C. Root system

Root System



Even though palm trees do not have an invasive root system, you must try to space them to ensure they do not compete with the neighboring roots for minerals and nutrients.


Palm trees typically have smaller roots, but they grow horizontally approximately five times the tree’s diameter. Naturally, if you plant them too close to each other, the roots might mingle together.


Consequently, it will be challenging for the smaller neighboring roots to acquire nutrients from the soil.


D. Sunlight Requirements

Sunlight Requirements



Palm trees love the full sun to thrive. So, when you pack them too closely, it might suppress their growth because the leaves will overshadow each other.


For instance, if you keep only two feet distance between palm trees, the tree will encounter two problems:

  1. Its leaves and branches will not get the necessary sunlight required to thrive.
  2. The tree’s trunk will obstruct the neighboring palm’s stem.


How Much Room Do Palm Trees Need To Grow?

Typically the size of the palm trees depends on the chosen species. On average, the palm grows about thirty-two to fifty feet tall. But, if you plant the tallest palm species, the Wax palm, they can reach up to two-hundred feet tall in their native home Andes.


Similarly, the palms will acquire a mature width between seven to ten feet. However, if grown indoors, the palms will be smaller than the palms planted outdoors because of environmental and space constraints. Having said that, an indoor palm spreads between two to four feet.


Do Palms Spread? How Far Do Palm Tree Roots Spread Out?

The palm trees indeed spread. Its offshoots grow from the plant’s base like a bamboo tree. Over time, the shoots grow so long and tall that they start growing horizontally, boosting the spread of the complete tree.


Thus, it is imperative to ensure ample space between palm trees so that it doesn’t get too cramped in space. You can consider pruning if the palm’s canopy becomes too wide for the outdoor or indoor location.


How Long Does It Take For A Palm Tree To Get Full Size?

Typically, palm trees take a decade to reach their mature size. Palms are fast-growing species and grow between 5-10 inches every year till they acquire a mature height. But, how tall palm trees get depends on the available growing conditions.


Related: Palm Tree Growth Rate | Palm Tree Lifespan


Distance Between Palm Trees & Their Growth Habits

Ques 1. Do palm trees grow in clusters?

Ans. Typically every palm has two growing methods:

  1. Clustered
  2. Solitary


Even though they are commonly seen in solitary shoots, you may spot them in dense or sparse clusters. To grow them in clusters, you need to plant them in close groups but not too close so that they don’t survive.


Ques 2. How far apart should you plant royal palm trees?

Ans. You can grow Royal Palm trees near a house, but ensure that there is at least eight feet gap from the structure to let the fronds spread and not get distorted by the touching walls.


In addition, you must also leave ample space so that the falling palm fronds do not damage anything, including the people underneath. Keep at least a six to eight feet gap between the two palms when growing in a row.


Ques 3. What is the standard spacing for oil palm?

Ans. Oil Palms must follow a triangular planting pattern with a 9 X 9 X 9 meters space between them. Thus, you cannot grow more than 143 trees for every hectare. Also, consider planting in the 60 X 60 X 60 cm pit.


Ques 4. What palm trees have non-invasive roots?

Ans. Some palms trees with non-invasive roots include:

  1. Queen Palm
  2. Windmill Palms
  3. Mediterranean Fan Palm
  4. Pygmy Date Palm