Unaccountably rare, most beautiful of all small palms, Lytocaryum weddellianum, is also called the "miniature coconut".
It is closely related to the coconut palm, but is much smaller and more cold tolerant, taking down to about 25 F.
The palm has a small stature, only growing to a height of 6 feet. In rare cases, it can grow to 10 feet, with a trunk diameter of about 2". After flowering, it produces small edible fruits that resemble and taste like coconuts. It has been reported that oil extracted from the nuts has been important commercially.
This palm should be grown in well draining soil that is constantly moist, but not soggy.
Miniature Coconut Palm is native to the State of Rio de Janeiro in southeastern Brazil. It grows naturally in the rainforests of the region. It thrives in the humid shade of the Brazilian rainforests. Originally, the palm was placed in the same species as the coconut palm, under the name Cocos weddelliana, before moving to the queen palm genus, Syagrus, and finally moving to its own genus, Lytocaryum.
It is a great container specimen growing 6 feet tall and fruiting in only a 7 gallon pot - perfect for folks with limited space!