Ceroxylon utile - (Karsten.)H.Wendl.
Common Name Wax Palm
Family Arecaceae or Palmae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Cloud forests at high elevations up to 4,000 metres in the Andes[200, 231].
Range S. America - Colombia.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Half Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

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Ceroxylon utile Wax Palm

Ceroxylon utile Wax Palm
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of cone
Ceroxylon utile is an evergreen Tree growing to 20 m (65ft) by 4 m (13ft) at a slow rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 9. It is in leaf 12-Jan. The flowers are dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required)The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.


Woodland Garden Secondary; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.
Edible Uses
Fruit. We have seen no reports for this species, but the fruit is probably edible[K].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

None known


Other Uses
A wax obtained from the trunk is used for making candles[231].
Cultivation details
Succeeds in most fertile moist but well-drained soils in a sheltered sunny position[231]. Requires a humus-rich soil with bright filtered light and cool high humidity[200]. This species tolerates several degrees of short-lived frost in its native climate[231], it can be grown outdoors in essentially frost-free temperate climates[200]. Palms usually have deep penetrating root systems and generally establish best when planted out at a young stage. However, older plants are substantially more cold tolerant than juvenile plants[231]. In areas at the limit of their cold tolerance, therefore, it is prudent to grow the plants in containers for some years, giving them winter protection, and only planting them into their permanent positions when sheer size dictates[231]. Palms can also often be transplanted even when very large. Although the thick fleshy roots are easily damaged and/or desiccated, new roots are generally freely produced. It is important to stake the plant very firmly to prevent rock, and also to give it plenty of water until re-established - removing many of the leaves can also help[231]. This palm grows at higher elevations than any other palm[231]. Dioecious, male and female plants must be grown if seed is required. This species is not in the IPOI list of accepted plant names.
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a warm greenhouse at not less than 24°c[188]. Stored seed is very slow to germinate. Pre-soaking the seed for 24 hours in warm water prior to sowing may shorten the germination time. Plants form a long tap-root some time before forming a shoot so the seed is best sown in groups of two or three in each deep pot, thinning if necessary to the best seedling. Germination of fresh seed usually takes place in 3 - 4 months at 25°c[138]. Grow on the plants in the greenhouse for at least their first two winters and plant out in the summer. Give the plants some protection from the cold for at least their first few winters outdoors.
Other Names
Found In
Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status
IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :
Related Plants


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Subject : Ceroxylon utile  

Plant Uses

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