Saw palmetto is a beautiful little palm and deserves a place in the ornamental landscape with the silver form being especially attractive. It is a small hardy fan palm whose stem usually remains below ground or runs just along the surface. In some cases, it develops an erect or arching trunk that may lift the whorl of leaves 2-8 ft (0.6-2.4 m) above ground. The palmate leaves are 2-3 ft (0.6-0.9 m) across and green or bluish green. The cluster of leaves gets about 4-6 ft (1.2-1.8 m) high with a similar spread. In the wild, saw palmetto often grows in clumps 20 ft (6 m) or more in diameter. The petioles (leaf stems) are about 2 ft (0.6 m) long and sharply saw-toothed. The fruits are round, black when ripe and about an inch in diameter. Saw palmetto occurs naturally on the coastal plain from South Carolina to southeastern Louisiana. It grows in a wide range of habitats from seaside sand dunes and dry scrub to moist forests, pine flatwoods and even wetlands. Saw palmetto can be the dominant ground cover in certain southeastern pine forests, sometimes covering hundreds of acres. Saw palmetto berries have always been a valuable food source for wildlife. As their effectiveness as a treatment for various human disorders is confirmed their value has steadily increased.
Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens) - Floridata, http://www.floridata.com/Plants/Arecacea/Serenoa%20repens/244 (accessed January 23, 2017).
Serenoa repens saw palmetto Palmae - Tropical Plant Book, http://www.tropicalplantbook.com/garden_plants/palms/palms_new/serenoa_repens.ht (accessed January 23, 2017).