How to Kill a Palm Tree? Effective Ways of Removing This Resilient Tree

There is no doubt that palm trees look majestic and beautiful and are often used as a decorative ornament for landscapes and many others. Be that as it may, they can also be a nuisance if planted in the wrong location of which you must know how to kill a palm tree so as to get rid of them.

It may sound weird to a few, especially to those have yet encountered this dilemma, but the procedure is fairly easy. As attractive as they may seem, palm trees can also cause damage if planted and grown in certain areas that it should not be in.

Areas such as a spot very near the house can be a possible disruption to structure’s foundation. In this brief guide, I will go through the steps on how to kill a palm tree. Additionally, I will also drop a few important tips along the way.

What You Will Need

Like any other procedure, there are essential tools and materials that you need to obtain before going through the steps. These are the tools and materials you will need for this task.

How to Kill a Palm Tree
  • Drill - This tool will be used to drill holes in the palm tree’s trunk. This could be an electric drill or a simple hand drill. Alternatively, you can also use a chisel to do the job, but it could require more effort and more extended time.
  • Drill Bits - This will be used to penetrate the trunk of the palm tree. You need drill bits that can penetrate the midsection of the tree trunk. You can opt to use drill bits for wood. Drill bits for concrete and metal can also be an option.
  • Glyphosate herbicide - This substance will be used as a poison for the tree. Alternatively, other types of herbicide can be used as well.
  • Safety or gardening gloves - As part of safety precaution, you need to wear safety or gardening gloves, especially when using the drill and handling the herbicide.
  • A funnel or large syringe - This will be used to pour or inject the herbicide into the holes on the tree.
  • Water and salt mixture - This specific mixture will be used on the roots of the palm tree. 

How To Kill A Palm Tree?

You can now proceed to follow the step by step guide once you have completed or obtained all the tools and materials that you need.

1. The first thing you need to do is to attach the drill bits to your drill. Once this is all set, proceed to drill holes on to the trunk of the palm tree.

Make sure that you drill the holes on a downward angle and with ample spacing. You also need to make sure to reach the center of the trunk. Drill the holes in the chest and waist sections of the trunk.

(Tip: Drilling holes that reach the center of the tree trunk will allow the herbicide to penetrate the heart of the palm tree resulting in killing it faster.)

2. Proceed to the subsequent step which is pouring in or injecting the herbicide. Be sure to fill each hole with enough herbicide to ensure the effectivity of it.

(Tip: When choosing an herbicide, pick one that is already premixed and be sure that it is a water-based premix rather than oil-based. Herbicides that are water-based premixed will trickle down faster through the whole to reach the center of the tree trunk.)

3. Give it ample time for the herbicide to be absorbed thoroughly into the tree. You can wait for a few hours and then check if the holes are already dry. Once you have confirmed that the first dose of the herbicide was already absorbed, you can instantly go for a second round.

(Tip: A second or third dose of herbicide is necessary especially for very large palm trees.)

4. To add effectivity to this method, you can also pour the water and salt mixture on the root of the palm tree. This mixture will encourage drying of the roots and will help kill the palm tree faster.

5. Finally, you have to wait as patiently as possible until the palm tree dries up and ultimately dies. This will usually happen in the next three to four weeks.

To have a better idea of how this method is done, watch this video using a similar technique:

Other Ways to Kill a Palm Tree

Aside from the method I have discussed, there are also other ways on how to kill a palm tree. You can also consider these ways as an alternative.

How to Kill a Palm Tree
  • Cutting down the palm tree is also another way to kill it. This will require careful planning and a lot of effort to achieve. Make sure to wear safety gear and determine which way the tree should be falling to avoid any mishaps.
  • If in case you do not have time to strategize and execute the proper procedure of killing your palm tree, you can always hire a professional to do it for you. This can come with a price but will save you all the hard work and nerve-racking preparation.


As a summary, palm trees are often considered as an attractive decoration that can make a landscape picturesque. However, there are also times that it can be a nuisance and can cause damage and disruption in its area.

In this case, the proper and careful process of how to kill a palm tree needs to be done. In doing so, you need to make sure that you have the necessary tools, materials, and remember to follow the steps with caution.

Did this article able to help you? Were you able to learn steps on how to kill a palm tree? Did you find the additional tips useful? Do you have any other recommendations regarding this topic?

I would like to hear your thoughts about this article. Send your feedback and suggestions by leaving a comment below. 

Dan Harris

Hi. I'm Dan Harris. My wife and I started gardening 5 years ago. Neither one of us had any gardening background but we loved the idea of growing our own organic food. Over the years, our garden has almost doubled in size and I’ve learned a lot from my season’s successes and failures. I’ve been excited to share my own beginning knowledge and special skills with all garden lovers.

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