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Cabbage Palm (Sabal Palm)
Cabbage Palm, Sabal palmetto, is the honorable state tree of Florida as well as a monarch palm tree for exuding a sense of place in Florida landscapes! Fan shaped leaves can create a spherical shaped head on mature palms that are not pruned. White flowers are numerous followed by shiny, black fruits. It supports many epiphytic plants and this palm is a wildlife bonanza supporting pollinators, birds, and mammals. Additionally, it has a rich ethno botanical history. Cabbage Palm is very wind, salt, drought, and flood tolerant. Unfortunately, many of the Cabbage Palms that are in suburban landscapes, especially commercial properties, are terribly over pruned. This cancerous cultural habit is ugly and damages the well being of the palm and reducing it's ecological services. This is surprising that people pay poorly trained maintenance contractors to damage their palms when Florida is known for it's tourism and it's attraction to palms. If Cabbage Palm has to be pruned, it should never be pruned with the leaves cut past a horizontal plain at the bottom set of the leaves. It is a poor excuse that leaves are removed to prune off flowers and fruit. It takes a few minutes extra to remove those from around the leaves and this should only happen where the fruit drop can create a problem.