Palm trees (botanical name Aracaceae) come in over 2,000 varieties, most of which grow in tropical and subtropical climates, although a few types are cold-hardy. Palm trees need special fertilization, including micronutrients like boron that are vital to their health and growth. Though many people associate palm trees with desert conditions, these trees grow in areas where there is an abundant water supply. Knowing how to water palms at every stage of their growth is crucial to their survival.
Provide sufficient water at planting time when palm trees are most vulnerable. Newly planted palms should be watered once each day. This helps establish their root systems and withstand transplant shock. Dig a bowl around the base of the plant after setting into the ground and fill the bowl with water. A tree transplanted from a 10-gallon pot should get 10 gallons of water at planting (and a 25-gallon pot, 25 gallons of water, and so forth).
Irrigate established trees two to three times per week under normal conditions. These require less watering than newly planted palm trees. When the weather is particularly hot, water a bit more, but allow the water to trickle slowly into the soil.
Water the palm tree at least once a week when conditions are dry. The areas in which palm trees grow, such as Florida, Texas and southern California, often see drought conditions. Though palm trees are drought-tolerant and can survive dry seasons well, they grow faster and healthier with adequate watering.
Reduce irrigation in winter. In many areas where palm trees grow, the winter months are a time of cool temperatures and less rainfall. Palm trees grow in the hotter months and go dormant in the winter, so you can reduce watering in October or November. This tells the palm tree to stop growing and prepare for winter temperatures.