Sabal uresana

Sonoran palmetto
Broad, often silver, fan shaped leaves with recurved tips. Foliage feature when young, slowly matures into a large tree with a stout trunk. Dramatic impact. Hardy.
Sabal uresana
height 20–30ft
width 15–20ft
tolerates Cold, Drought, Heat
This palm should be watered deeply every week or two once it’s established. It doesn’t want to ever dry out completely.
exposure Full Sun
drainage In Ground: Cactus Mix, In Pots: Cactus Mix, Tolerates Heavy Soil, Tolerates Sandy Soil
origin NW Mexico
8, 9, 11–24

Sunset Zones Map

Outdoor Exposure Guide


Full Sun
Six or more hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Shade
Three to five hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Sun
One to two hours of sun beams directly landing on the plants leaves.

Full Shade
The plant is never fully lit by sun beams, but is in a bright spot or has dappled sunbeams playing over the leaves throughout the day.

Deep Shade
The plant never has dappled light on the leaves, and is in a place that feels dim, even on a nice sunny day.


Growing Notes

Slow growing, though this palm will reach ample proportions with many decades. An adult planting this tree can expect their grand kids to see a thirty foot tall tree. Luckily it is a beautiful foliage feature when young.
Excellent dry heat tolerance for desert and interior areas of California.
Palms are generally heavy feeders, so if you want them growing quickly and looking their best, they should be fertilized at least three times a year. Fertilizing at spring equinox, summer solstice and fall equinox will allow for a winter rest. Be sure to feed your palm with a fertilizer that contains micronutrients (especially including magnesium), especially if you see yellowing leaves or yellow spots on the leaves.
Fan palms have leaflets spreading from the tip of the rachis, giving the crown of the palm a rounded full look. They tend to rustle in the breeze, adding a soothing note to the garden.

Special Interest

Native to the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains of west Mexico unto 4,000 feet.

This palm contributes to the oasis-style garden, especially when it’s mixed with cactus and other drought-tolerant plants like euphorbias. It also makes an unusual and yet compelling addition to the Mediterranean garden when mixed with lavender, rosemary, and olives.

More Info

A key diagnostic feature is that the petioles are smooth (unarmed), extending well into the leaf blades where they create a “V” shape.