Simply Trees

Umbrella Palm

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Once a weekFull sunDeer resistant


  • Architectural Appeal: The unique umbrella-like leaf clusters offer a stunning architectural element, perfect for adding vertical interest in garden beds, ponds, or indoor pots.

  • Water-Loving: Exceptionally well-suited for aquatic settings such as ponds or water gardens, this plant can also grow in consistently moist soil, offering versatility in placement.

  • Low Maintenance: Given its adaptability to both water gardens and moist soils, the Umbrella Palm is an easy-care plant suitable for both novice and experienced gardeners.

  • Also known as Umbrella Sedge

More Details

The Umbrella Palm, scientifically known as Cyperus alternifolius, is a fascinating perennial that brings a unique architectural element to gardens, patios, and even indoor spaces. Renowned for its umbrella-like clusters of slender leaves at the top of tall stems, this plant creates a dramatic focal point in various settings. With appropriate care, the Umbrella Palm thrives in both aquatic and terrestrial environments, making it a versatile choice for those looking to add a touch of the exotic to their garden or home.

Growth rate: Moderate growth rate; matures to a height of 2-6 feet and a width of 2-3 feet.

Please note: Images on our website depict plants and trees at full maturity to showcase their expected grown characteristics. These images are illustrative examples only and do not represent the size of plants or trees upon delivery.

Pruning: Little to no pruning is necessary. Remove any dead or yellow leaves and stems to maintain its appearance.

Fertilization: Use a balanced, slow-release fertilizer once in the spring to encourage robust growth.

Winter Protection: In colder zones, bring the plant indoors or apply mulch around its base to offer protection from frost.

Select a location that offers full sun to partial shade and either wet or consistently moist soil. Dig a hole about twice the size of the root ball, amending with organic matter if needed for better moisture retention. Place the plant in the hole, making sure it's at the same soil level as it was in its original pot. Backfill the hole with the amended soil, pressing down to remove air pockets. If planting in water, ensure the crown is 1-2 inches below the water surface. Thoroughly water the plant after planting, and keep the soil or water consistently moist for optimal growth.

The Umbrella Palm enjoys locations with full sun to partial shade and requires consistent moisture, whether it's planted in a pond or in soil. Ensure regular watering to maintain its tropical lushness.

We process and ship your order as quickly as possible, typically within 1-3 business days. You will receive a shipping confirmation with tracking information once your item(s) ship.

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!

In cases of extreme cold or hot weather, we may temporarily delay shipping to ensure the well-being of your plants. Our primary focus is on delivering healthy and thriving plants to you. Rest assured, we'll make every effort to notify you of any delays promptly.

Please allow additional ship times during inclement weather and sale periods. We do not process or ship orders on the weekend or U.S. Holidays. Simply Trees is not responsible for delays due to carriers, local disruptions, or weather.

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At Simply Trees, we're committed to your satisfaction. If your plants arrive considerably damaged or sustained damage beyond the point of recovery, please contact us within five days at with clear photos for assistance. Our 30-day guarantee covers issues after planting, subject to our terms and conditions. We can't cover plants in the wrong climate or with inadequate care, but we're here to help in other situations. For a detailed understanding of our 30-day guarantee and how we ensure a fair process, click here to learn more.


Zones 9-11

The Umbrella Palm is well-suited for USDA Zones 9-11, meaning it performs best in warm to hot climates with mild winters. While the plant is not frost-tolerant, it offers a lengthy growing season and a tropical vibe that's perfect for warmer areas or as a seasonal indoor plant in colder climates.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Umbrella Palm, also known as Umbrella Sedge, typically grows to a mature height of 4 to 6 feet. Under optimal conditions, it can sometimes reach up to 8 feet or more. Here are some key points regarding its size:

Height: Generally, the Umbrella Palm reaches 4 to 6 feet tall, but with ideal growing conditions, such as ample water, sunlight, and rich soil, it can grow taller, potentially up to 8 feet.

Spread: The plant tends to spread outwards as well, with a width of about 2 to 4 feet. It grows via rhizomes, which can cause it to spread and form clumps over time.

Container Growth: When grown in containers, the size of the Umbrella Palm might be slightly more restrained, but it can still reach heights of several feet, depending on the size of the container and the care it receives.

Factors Influencing Size:
Sunlight: More sunlight can contribute to taller and more robust growth.
Water: Consistently moist to wet soil is crucial for maximum growth.
Soil: Rich, well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter supports healthy, vigorous growth.
Climate: Warm, humid conditions in USDA hardiness zones 8-11 are ideal for optimal growth.

By providing the right care and environment, your Umbrella Palm can reach its full potential, adding a lush, tropical element to your garden or indoor space.

The Umbrella Palm is known for its relatively fast growth rate, especially when provided with optimal growing conditions. Here are some details about its growth:

Growth Rate: The Umbrella Palm can grow quite quickly, often adding 1 to 2 feet of height per year. Under ideal conditions, it can reach its mature height relatively rapidly.

Mature Size: The plant typically reaches a height of 4 to 6 feet, although in very favorable conditions, it can grow taller, sometimes up to 8 feet or more.

Optimal Conditions:

Sunlight: Full sun to partial shade is ideal. It grows faster with more light but can tolerate some shade.
Water: Consistently moist to wet soil is crucial for fast growth. The Umbrella Palm thrives in boggy conditions and can even grow in standing water.
Soil: Rich, well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter promotes healthy growth. Regularly adding compost or other organic material can support its rapid growth.
Climate: The Umbrella Palm grows best in warm, humid climates. It can tolerate a range of temperatures but performs best in USDA hardiness zones 8-11.

Fertilization: Regular fertilization during the growing season can enhance growth. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 4-6 weeks in spring and summer.

Maintenance: Regular pruning of dead or damaged stems helps maintain the plant's vigor and encourages new growth.

In summary, the Umbrella Palm is a fast-growing plant when provided with the right conditions, making it an excellent choice for quickly adding lush, tropical foliage to gardens, water features, or container displays.

The best place to plant an Umbrella Palm depends on its needs for sunlight, water, and soil conditions. Here are some ideal locations and considerations for planting:

Partial Shade to Full Sun: Umbrella Palm thrives in partial shade to full sun. It can tolerate full sun in cooler climates but benefits from some afternoon shade in hotter regions to prevent leaf scorch.

Water Conditions
Moist to Wet Soil: Umbrella Palm prefers consistently moist to wet soil. It is well-suited for planting near water features such as ponds, streams, or water gardens. It can also thrive in boggy or marshy areas.
Containers: If growing in a container, ensure that the potting mix remains consistently moist. Using a water-retentive soil mix can help maintain the required moisture levels.

Well-Draining but Moist Soil: While the plant prefers wet conditions, it also needs soil that drains well to prevent root rot. Adding organic matter to the soil can improve both water retention and drainage.
Acidic to Neutral pH: The Umbrella Palm grows well in soil with an acidic to neutral pH. Amending the soil with compost can help achieve the desired pH balance.

Specific Locations
Pond Edges and Water Gardens: Ideal for creating a natural, lush look. The plant can handle standing water and will thrive in these conditions.
Rain Gardens: Perfect for areas that receive excess rainwater runoff. The Umbrella Palm helps absorb excess water and prevent erosion.
Borders and Beds: Plant in mixed borders and beds where soil moisture is consistently high. Group with other moisture-loving plants for a cohesive look.
Containers: When planting in containers, place the pots on patios, decks, or near water features. Containers allow for easy control of soil moisture and mobility.

Additional Tips
Winter Protection: In colder climates, consider planting the Umbrella Palm in a location that provides some protection from harsh winter winds. If planted in a container, move it indoors or to a sheltered location during winter.
Air Circulation: Ensure good air circulation around the plant to prevent fungal diseases, especially in more humid environments.

By choosing a location that meets these conditions, your Umbrella Palm will thrive and add a lush, tropical feel to your garden or landscape.

When planting Umbrella Palm, spacing is important to allow for its natural growth and spreading habit. Here are some guidelines for spacing:

In Ground Planting
General Spacing: Plant Umbrella Palms about 2 to 3 feet apart. This allows enough space for each plant to grow and spread without overcrowding.
Dense Planting: If you want a denser look or need the plants to fill in more quickly, you can plant them closer together, about 1.5 to 2 feet apart. Be prepared to manage the spread to prevent overcrowding.
Water Gardens and Ponds: When planting around water features, spacing can be closer to create a lush, tropical appearance. About 1.5 to 2 feet apart should work well.

Container Planting
Single Container: For individual containers, choose a pot that is large enough to accommodate the plant's root system. A pot with a diameter of at least 12 inches is a good starting point.
Grouped Containers: If grouping multiple Umbrella Palms in a larger container or planter, space them about 1 to 1.5 feet apart to allow for growth and spreading.

Factors to Consider
Growth Habit: Remember that Umbrella Palms spread through rhizomes, so they will gradually fill in the space around them. Plan for future growth when deciding on spacing.
Maintenance: If you want to manage the spread more easily, consider using root barriers or planting in containers.
Aesthetic Goals: Your desired look for the garden will also influence spacing. For a more natural, wild look, plant closer together. For a more structured appearance, give each plant more space.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your Umbrella Palms have enough room to grow healthily and create the desired visual impact in your garden or landscape.

Yes, the Umbrella Palm does spread, primarily through its rhizomes (underground stems). Here's how it spreads and what you can do to manage it:

Spread by Rhizomes
Rhizomes: The Umbrella Palm produces rhizomes that grow horizontally under the soil. These rhizomes can produce new shoots and roots, leading to the formation of new plants nearby. This natural spreading habit can make the Umbrella Palm an effective ground cover in wet areas, but it can also lead to it becoming somewhat invasive if not managed.

Managing Spread
Container Planting: One of the best ways to control the spread of Umbrella Palm is to grow it in a container. This confines the rhizomes to the pot, preventing them from spreading into other areas of your garden.
Barrier Method: If you are planting the Umbrella Palm in the ground, consider using a root barrier. This involves placing a physical barrier around the planting area to restrict the movement of the rhizomes and keep the plant contained.
Regular Maintenance: Regularly check the area around your Umbrella Palm for new shoots and remove them if you want to control its spread. Digging up and cutting back the rhizomes can help keep the plant in check.
Divide and Transplant: Periodically dig up and divide the plant to prevent overcrowding and excessive spreading. You can transplant the divided sections to other areas or share them with other gardeners.

Ideal Uses
Water Gardens and Ponds: Because of its spreading habit, the Umbrella Palm is excellent for water gardens and ponds where its growth can be beneficial for filling in spaces and providing a lush, tropical look.
Bog Gardens: Its ability to spread makes it suitable for bog gardens, where it can help stabilize the soil and create a dense, green cover.

By understanding and managing its spreading habit, you can enjoy the beauty and benefits of the Umbrella Palm without it overtaking your garden.

Caring for the Umbrella Palm involves providing the right conditions and maintenance to ensure its healthy growth. Here are some key care tips:

Indoors: Place the Umbrella Palm in a bright location with indirect sunlight. It can tolerate some direct sunlight, especially in the morning or late afternoon, but avoid intense midday sun, which can scorch the leaves.
Outdoors: Plant it in a location that receives partial shade to full sun. It performs well in both but may need more frequent watering if exposed to full sun.

Consistent Moisture: Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Water the plant regularly, ensuring that the soil remains damp. The Umbrella Palm thrives in wet conditions, so it can tolerate standing water better than many other plants.
Humidity: The plant prefers high humidity. Mist the leaves regularly if the air is dry, or place a humidity tray nearby.

Well-Draining Soil: Use a rich, well-draining potting mix. Adding organic matter like compost can improve soil structure and water retention.
Water Gardens: The Umbrella Palm can also be grown in water gardens or at the edges of ponds where the soil is consistently wet.

Warm Temperatures: This plant prefers warm temperatures between 65°F and 75°F (18°C to 24°C). It can tolerate higher temperatures if humidity is maintained.
Cold Protection: Protect the Umbrella Palm from temperatures below 50°F (10°C). If grown outdoors in colder climates, bring it indoors before the first frost.

Regular Feeding: Feed the Umbrella Palm with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 4-6 weeks during the growing season (spring and summer). Reduce feeding in the fall and winter when the plant's growth slows.

Remove Dead Stems: Trim any dead or yellowing stems at their base to encourage new growth and maintain the plant's appearance.
Control Size: Prune the plant to control its size and shape if necessary.

Pests and Diseases
Monitor for Pests: Keep an eye out for common pests such as spider mites, aphids, and scale. Treat infestations promptly with insecticidal soap or neem oil.
Prevent Disease: Ensure good air circulation around the plant to prevent fungal diseases. Avoid overwatering to reduce the risk of root rot.

Repotting Frequency: Repot the Umbrella Palm every 2-3 years or when it outgrows its container. Choose a slightly larger pot and refresh the soil to provide new nutrients.

By following these care tips, your Umbrella Palm will thrive and add a lush, tropical feel to your indoor or outdoor space.

The watering needs of an Umbrella Palm depend on several factors, including whether it is grown indoors or outdoors, the climate, and the time of year. Here are some guidelines to help you water your Umbrella Palm appropriately:

Outdoor Umbrella Palm
Consistently Moist Soil: Umbrella Palms thrive in consistently moist soil. Water the plant regularly to keep the soil damp but not waterlogged. This is especially important during the growing season (spring through early fall).

Frequency: Water deeply once or twice a week, depending on the weather and soil conditions. In hotter, dry climates or during dry spells, you may need to water more frequently.

Watering Method: Ensure thorough watering by soaking the soil deeply, allowing the water to reach the roots. Avoid letting the soil dry out completely between waterings.

Indoor Umbrella Palm
Indoor Care: Indoor Umbrella Palms also prefer consistently moist soil but may need less frequent watering than outdoor plants. Check the soil moisture regularly and water when the top inch of soil feels dry.

Frequency: Generally, water indoor plants once a week, adjusting based on the humidity levels and indoor temperature. In dry indoor conditions, such as those created by heating systems in winter, you may need to water more frequently.

Humidity: Indoor Umbrella Palms benefit from higher humidity. Consider using a humidity tray or a room humidifier, or mist the plant regularly to maintain adequate moisture levels.

General Tips
Avoid Waterlogging: While Umbrella Palms like moist soil, ensure that the soil has good drainage to prevent waterlogging, which can lead to root rot.

Mulching: Apply a layer of mulch around the base of the plant to help retain soil moisture and reduce the frequency of watering.

Seasonal Adjustments: Reduce watering during the winter months when the plant's growth slows down. Allow the soil to dry out slightly more between waterings, but still keep it consistently moist.

Water Quality: Use room-temperature water to avoid shocking the plant's roots. If possible, use rainwater or distilled water, as tap water with high levels of chlorine or fluoride can be harmful to the plant over time.

By following these guidelines, you can ensure that your Umbrella Palm receives the right amount of water to stay healthy and vibrant.

Yes, cutting back the Umbrella Palm in the fall can be beneficial, especially in colder climates or if you are moving it indoors for the winter. Here are some reasons and tips for cutting back your Umbrella Palm:

Health and Tidiness: Removing dead or damaged stems helps maintain the plant's overall health and appearance. This can also reduce the risk of pests and diseases that may overwinter in the plant.

Preparing for Winter: If you live in an area where the Umbrella Palm cannot survive outdoors over the winter, cutting it back makes it easier to move the plant indoors. It also reduces the plant's water needs during the less active growing season.

Promoting New Growth: Cutting back encourages new growth in the spring. Pruning old or leggy stems allows the plant to focus its energy on producing fresh, healthy shoots.

How to Cut Back the Umbrella Palm:
Timing: Perform the pruning in late fall, after the growing season has ended but before the first frost in colder climates. If you are moving the plant indoors, do this just before relocation.

Tools: Use clean, sharp pruning shears to make precise cuts. Sterilize your tools before and after use to prevent the spread of disease.

Pruning Method:
Remove Dead or Damaged Stems: Start by cutting off any stems that are brown, dead, or damaged.
Thin Out Dense Growth: If the plant is very dense, thin out some of the older stems to improve air circulation.
Cut Back Height: Depending on your preference and space, you can cut back the plant by up to one-third of its height. Make cuts just above a node or joint where new growth can emerge.
After Care: After cutting back, reduce watering slightly since the plant's growth will slow down during the winter months. If you are bringing the plant indoors, place it in a location with bright, indirect light.

By following these steps, you can help ensure that your Umbrella Palm stays healthy and ready to thrive again in the spring.

The Umbrella Palm is a versatile and attractive plant that can be used in various landscape settings. Here are some different landscape uses for the Umbrella Palm:

Water Gardens and Ponds: Umbrella Palms thrive in wet conditions, making them ideal for planting around water gardens, ponds, and along the edges of streams. They add a tropical look and help soften the transition between water and land.

Container Gardens: When grown in pots, Umbrella Palms can be used to create striking container gardens. They can be placed on patios, balconies, or around pools to add vertical interest and a lush, green backdrop.

Bog Gardens: These plants are perfect for bog gardens, where the soil remains consistently moist. They can be planted alongside other moisture-loving plants to create a lush, naturalistic landscape.

Accent Plants: Umbrella Palms can be used as focal points in garden beds and borders. Their unique, umbrella-like foliage adds texture and visual interest, making them stand out among other plants.

Screening and Privacy: When planted in groups, Umbrella Palms can act as a natural screen or privacy barrier. Their dense, tall growth helps block views and create a secluded, intimate garden space.

Tropical and Exotic Gardens: With their distinctive foliage, Umbrella Palms are well-suited for tropical or exotic-themed gardens. They pair well with other tropical plants like cannas, elephant ears, and hibiscus to create a lush, vibrant landscape.

Indoor Landscaping: Umbrella Palms can be used as indoor plants in large containers. They are particularly effective in atriums, conservatories, or any indoor space with bright, indirect light. Their tall, graceful stems add a touch of greenery and elegance to interior designs.

Rain Gardens: Due to their preference for wet conditions, Umbrella Palms are an excellent choice for rain gardens. They help manage stormwater runoff by absorbing excess water and reducing erosion.

By incorporating Umbrella Palms into various landscape settings, you can enhance the beauty and functionality of your garden with their unique and attractive foliage.

Winterizing an Umbrella Palm, especially in regions where temperatures drop below freezing, is crucial for its survival. Here are steps to properly winterize your Umbrella Palm:

Move Indoors: If your Umbrella Palm is in a pot, bring it indoors before the first frost. Place it in a bright location with indirect sunlight, such as near a window. Ensure the indoor temperature remains above 50°F (10°C).

Reduce Watering: Cut back on watering during the winter months. Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings, but do not let it become completely dry. Overwatering can lead to root rot, especially when the plant is not actively growing.

Maintain Humidity: Umbrella Palms thrive in humid conditions. Indoor heating can dry out the air, so consider using a humidifier or placing a tray of water near the plant to increase humidity levels.

Prune Dead or Damaged Stems: Remove any dead or damaged stems before bringing the plant indoors. This helps reduce the risk of pests and diseases and keeps the plant looking tidy.

Mulch for Outdoor Plants: If your Umbrella Palm is planted in the ground and you live in a milder climate where it can survive outdoors, apply a thick layer of mulch around the base of the plant. This helps insulate the roots from freezing temperatures. Use organic materials like straw, bark, or leaves.

Cover with Frost Cloth: In areas with occasional frost, you can cover the plant with a frost cloth or burlap to protect it from freezing temperatures. Ensure the cover does not touch the foliage directly, as this can cause frost damage.

Check for Pests: Before bringing your Umbrella Palm indoors, inspect it for pests such as spider mites or aphids. Treat any infestations promptly to prevent them from spreading indoors.

By following these steps, you can help ensure that your Umbrella Palm stays healthy and survives the winter, ready to thrive again when warmer weather returns.

Our Process

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!