Asked in
Ireland
Palm Trees

Why do palm trees grow in Ireland?

Answer

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June 15, 2014 10:35PM

The Gulf Stream moderates the climate, making it mild enough for palm trees like Trachycarpus fortunei to grow throughout the island. In the southwest portion of the island, where the climate is mildest, the Canary Island Date Palm (Phoenix canariensis) may be cultivated.

However, just because they grow does not mean they grow very well. For palm trees to grow, the most important consideration is that it never gets too cold. In southern Ireland, it's rarely very warm, but it's also almost never very cold either.

In these conditions, a palm tree can survive and grow. It will not grow very large, however and it probably won't bear fruit. They manage to live there, but don't thrive and get very large.

They reason they are there is because someone planted them as a decoration. They're not native to the area and probably would not continue to grow there if they were not actively cultivated by humans.

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They are also grown in the warmer parts of England & Wales - Scotland might be a bit too far North but I'm happy to be corrected if someone knows of a sheltered spot with palm-trees there.