NZ Palms, Cycads and Subtropical Plants

Driveway Landscaping Ideas for New Zealand.

A classic palm lined driveway in the tropics.  Whilst these Royal Palms won't grow in New Zealand there are other species that suit driveways.
The familiar Kentia, Howea forsteriana, makes a fine palm for landscaping driveways.
The tall and graceful Jucara Palm, Euterpe edulis, is an excellent choice when landscaping driveways in northern New Zealand.
Aged Queen Palms, Syagrus romanzoffiana, suit a formal driveway.
Ancient Mexican Cotton Palms, Washingtonia robusta, growing in Spain.  Suitable for a long driveway these are a reliable and fast-growing palm.

Nothing says status like a driveway landscaped with gorgeous palm trees.


The key to a driveway landscaping are tall stately palms with bare trunks and fronds kept well above eyelevel. There are two broad choices when landscaping a driveway; using just one species or mixing two or more species. Whilst the former approach is ideal for a formal driveway there is of course the risk that in twenty years from now one of the palms dies for no good reason. Mixed planting can much more easily hide such a disaster.


Unless you have a very wide driveway with plenty of room on either side avoid the larger Phoenix species as well as Livistona species.

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Particularly suitable tall palms include King Palms, Archontophoenix alexandrae, Juçara Palms, Euterpe edulis, Kentias, Howea forsteriana, and Queen Palms, Syagrus romanzoffiana. The latter two being much more tolerant of wind and chills. For a more Californian look consider the Mexican Cotton Palm, Washingtonia robusta. With both Archontophoenix alexandrae and Euterpe edulis it’s a good idea to plant palms in clumps of 3 or 5 (always odd numbers) for both the ornamental effect and as backup in the event of a palm unexpectedly dying.


Short and medium height species are great for a shorter driveway. Suitable species include the Bamboo Palm, Chamaedorea microspadix, and the Sugarcane Palm, Dypsis baronii.


Space the palms at a regular interval of perhaps 2.5m (smaller species) to 5m or more (larger species).