These fast-growing fan palms are too tall for most suburban gardens; they are best suited to large properties, avenues, parkways. The two species often hybridize if growing near each other. Widely grown in Florida.
W. 'Filibusta'. A fast-growing hybrid between the two species listed here; intermediate between them in size and appearance. Said to be at least as hardy as W. filifera; more tolerant of humidity.
W. filifera. DESERT FAN PALM. From California, Arizona. Hardy to 18F. To 60 ft. tall, 20 ft. wide, with thicker trunk than W. robusta. Long-stalked, 3- to 6-ft., light green leaves stand well apart in open crown. As leaves mature, they bend down to form a skirt of thatch.
W. robusta. THREAD PALM, MEXICAN FAN PALM. From Mexico. Hardy to 20F. To 100 ft. tall (though more like 6080 ft. in Southern gardens), 10 ft. wide; trunk is slightly curved or bent, slimmer than that of W. filifera. Head of bright green foliage is more compact; leafstalks are shorter, with a red streak on the undersides. Good plant for the beach.