What does the word “palm tree” trigger in you? Vacation? Beach? Warm weather?

Your guess is as good as mine. It’s hilarious to hear that “palm trees probably+ live longer than you”. As funny as that sounds it’s not far from the truth because if it takes 5 years to grow its trunk and has to spend 15 more years to produce coconuts, it means that the real life of a palm tree starts when it clocks 20 years just like humans. One species of palm was estimated to have lived up to 740 years old! Aside from that, palm trees are tough, they can grow in snow, amazing! So, they don’t just find solace at sandy beaches or tropical jungles but can handle sub-zero temperature too, maybe not forever.


Palm trees are flowering plants commonly found in tropical to subtropical climatic region. Their scientific name is Aceraceae and comes in about 2600 species with varied shape, size and leaves (frond).

Though there are varied types of palm tree, those that are common are few. The widespread ones are Chinese fan, Bismarck, Bottle, and Areca. The type commonly found at the beach are Royal and Queen types. Majorly, palm trees are grown to add a plethora of glamour to landscapes but there are some that are for palm-derived products such as coconut palm (also called Coco Nucifera) which grow tall to about 18 feet with a 6-foot canopy, which life is estimated to about 100 years.


There are different shaving tools that can be used to cut back or trim a palm tree. The type of tool that will be used to trim your palm tree depends on the size of your palm tree. Trees that vary in height, form and leaves are addressed with different tools. While there are simple hand-held pruners in your shed, professionals use heavy-duty equipment to undertake palm maintenance. However, the ultimate challenge you can face when fronds are several feet above your head is how to access them.


Serrated Knife

To cut through smaller fronds with diameter less than1 inch, a knife with a serrated edge is the best. A serrated knife can also be used to cut off flower stalks. Removing stalks and fronds will not harm the tree but rather, nutrients and energy which would have been used by them will be directly used by the tree for its health.



Basically, different saw types are useful for removing larger and thicker fronds from a palm tree. While hand saw or pruning saw are useful for removing thicker fronds, a chainsaw can be used to trim very huge fronds but extra care would be needed is that you and the trunk do not sustain injure in the course of shaving. There are various saw types used for tree shaving, they include;

  • Cordless Pole Saws: mostly used by a homeowner who requires a powered pole saw. They are battery-powered tools which one can get by with when electricity is lacking. Can last for about 45 minutes to one hour before recharging for use again.
  • Electric Pole Saws: it’s a lightweight saw, more powerful than a cordless. Can get work going for as long as you want once there is a steady power supply
  • Manual pole saws: height is majorly the reason for using a manual pole saw. Some can extend up to 24 feet to get your work done.

All the pole saws above can get your work done depending on how you want it. Either electrically powered, battery or manpower.


Climbing Gear

Palm trees height vary with their species. While some grow as tall as 70 feet, some may be just 15 feet tall. Climbing gears are necessary so that even the tallest tree can afford the opportunity to be trimmed. Trees that are 15 feet tall can be trimmed using an extension ladder. However, there are people who are specifically trained for climbing tree with the aid of cables and harness. Spikes and cleats should be shunned when climbing as it causes permanent damage to the tree trunk. Trees that are very tall should be trimmed using a bucket lift or cherry picker.


Protective Gears

Your body has to be protected against palms that are armed with spikes along their edges. Part of your body such as your eyes and hands should be protected. Wear gloves to protect your hands and put on safety goggles to prevent particles from sawing and cutting from getting into your eyes.



To cut small-diameter fronds which are not very far above your head, pruning blades can be used on an extension pole to get that done. It’s interesting to know that when pruning blade is combined with a pole it doubles as an arm. So, without ladder you can cut off fronds when saw handles are attached to extension poles. However, you have to ensure that your pruning blade is firmly attached to the pole.



Do not be in haste to prune or trim trees. Before using tools, sterilize them. Prepare a sanitizing solution by mixing one-part bleach and three parts water in a bucket. Deep each tool into the bucket. Soak for about 5 minutes, retrieve tools from solution and rinse in clean water. Air-dry the tools and repeat the procedure between each cut to prevent the spread of diseases. If your palm tree is very tall or you are not pleased using your garden tools, consulting a professional will be the best option. Ensure you hire someone who is competent and experienced in palm tree trimming and removal. Learn how to skin a palm tree here.