Coconut Palm Restoration

More than 100 years ago, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Edison planted dozens of coconut palms at their tropical winter estate in Fort Myers locating most of them in the coconut grove along the river and along their fence on McGregor Boulevard.  Eventually, the line of coconut palms extended along the fence of the Ford Estate next door and became an important and recognizable feature of the Edison and Ford tropical gardens.

Beginning August 2011, the McGregor Boulevard Edison and Ford Coconut Palm Tree Program will restore and maintain this important historical landscape element to the estates of the two neighbors.  Approximately twenty palms are expected to be added in the next year.

As palm experts know, in Florida, the Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera) has suffered from a plant disease known as ‘lethal yellowing’ so Estates Horticulturalist Debbie Hughes has selected the Malayan Coconut Palm which is not susceptible but in the same family.  Trees planted in the restoration program will stand approximately 10 feet high at the time of planting so that they will grow and adapt to their new environment but still bear fruit within a few years.

If you would like to donate a coconut palm to this restoration program, please contact the Estates.  Your contribution is tax deductible. Your $350 contribution includes a commemorative plant sign displaying the Honoree name and special occasion as well ongoing care by the Estates Horticulture Staff.

For a full list of trees available for donation, visit our Celebration Tree Plantings page.