For over seven years, I've had the pleasure of sharing my cubicle with a 16 foot tall palm tree. This sturdy palm greets everyone to walk into the offices of our artificial tree manufacturing business. Cold, rain, sleet and shine, it stands tall and proud to offer us a blanket of palm leaves and its rugged palm trunk offers a visual sanctuary between the piles of paperwork and other office clutter.
[more] When I began my career at Commercial Silk, I was fresh out of design school. I did not know much about either live or artificial trees, silk palms or the benefits of faux plants. Actually, I could not keep living plants alive. But the idea of interior landscaping with artificial plants and trees intrigued me, and sharing my workspace with a very tall artificial palm tree also appealed to me. After all, residing in Minnesota, tropical palm trees are scarce in the natural landscape. And yearning for my next tropical vacation of palm trees swaying and the ocean breeze, this artificial palm tree keeps that dream a little bit closer, and hopefully a little bit sooner.
Seeing this large palm tree has provided other benefits as well. Real plants have been noted for their mood-lifting qualities, and while I am not an expert on the topic, I do consider my artificial palm to be a spirit-lifter. When the workload and stress is at a higher level, I find it very refreshing to have this large palm in my cube. It is something of a work-of-art, visually interesting, and lifts my eye upwards to the palm fronds which expands the ceiling to a higher dimension. While I am blanketed in the silk palm branches, I feel as though I am in an open space, and it does not take up much room because the artificial trunk is columnar, and the head of the palm leaves is nearly 12 feet high.
Secondly, this fake palm tree requires only minimal care. In comparison to the live plants that are planted on the opposite side of my cube, this palm tree does not need to be watered or trimmed, nor does it have any insect issues. An annual light dusting is all that is needed, which eliminates distractions of plant care, accessibility to the space, and the occasional water droplets in my work space.
While this single palm tree is placed in a planter and centered underneath the skylight in our office, I have seen many other uses of silk palm trees in tropical landscape themes. Expertly placed artificial plants have also found their way into custom planter beds indoors and outdoors in lobby atriums, shopping malls, restaurants, water parks, casinos and government offices. The new varieties of silk palms and other large trees continue to expand for our growing list of international clientele, and using these artificial plants in designs that need a lift remain as fresh and modern as a natural landscape.
In addition to large silk palm trees, photos of small and traditional palm varieties are featured in this blog. Commercial Silk Int'l manufactures an array of choices, and if you are wanting an artificial palm for your interior space, we can help find the right plant for you.
You can decide for yourself whether the iPad is truly a revolutionary device or just a passing fad. We were excited to learn, regardless, that there is a new app game for the iPad called Plants vs. Zombies
. In this tower defense game, your job is to plant a variety of foliage that shoot thorns and other plant-style armaments to stop zombies from entering your house.
[more]On a more sober note, we were reminded of the real life dangers that artificial plants and trees can pose when they are not manufactured with fire retardant foliage. A Marion, OH woman was startled to find that a fire had broken out
in her home after coming back from gathering wood outside. The fire started from an incense candle that ignited an artificial plant nearby. As our own fire retardant plant tests
(video) have shown, artificial plants that are not properly protected can be very dangerous for hotels, offices, restaurants, and other commercial properties. The woman was unharmed and thankful she returned when she did, as her house was not entirely destroyed.
Last but not least, an artificial palm tree
competition was recently held in a Poland village to celebrate Palm Sunday. The annual event saw a new height record
, with the winner reaching 35.1 yards tall. To the participants, the palm trees symbolize both sacrifice and rebirth.
Concealing cell phone towers is often a compromise to an unwanted problem. No one wants a cell phone tower in their neighborhood, known as they are for bringing masses of steel to otherwise quaint neighborhoods, reducing home values, dosing people with unhealthy levels of radiation (some say), and inciting gridlock at zoning boards
all over the country. The improvement of cell phone coverage, for whatever reason, does not make up for these drawbacks in most people's eyes.
[more]Concealing cell phone towers with silk plants and trees, however, can make all the ballyhoo seem like nothing but empty sound and fury. Many artificial tree solutions, when done by professional manufacturers, look incredibly authentic and seamlessly blend into the forest environment around them. The most common varieties of cell tower trees include faux Elm (which is very similar to artificial Banyan foliage
manufactured by Commercial Silk Int'l), Pine and Palm trees.
Outside of silk plants and trees, many other creative concealments have been implemented
, including church bell towers, street light poles, lighthouses, and more. At the end of the day, if you can convincingly hide a mobile phone tower, there's not a whole lot left to do but be grateful for better coverage.
In Brockton, MA this week, a judge ordered a car wash owner to remove artificial grass he had installed on his business property, citing the dictionary definition of landscaping in his ruling. The owner had installed it because of how impractical and expensive it was to maintain real grass in his place of business, and is vowing to appeal the decision.
Artificial plants and trees continue to be popular choices for water parks and aquatic centers where live plants are difficult to maintain due to pool chemicals, mistreatment from people, and unnatural moisture levels in the air. Commercial Silk's project at the Southeast Missouri State University Aquatic Center was featured recently, with flattering images of very authentic looking artificial palm trees.
Most people know that silk comes from silkworms, but not many people know that artificial plants are often made from silk as well. Looks like all that plant eating by silkworms is, in essence, creating more plants, albeit the artificial variety.
The history of Palm trees and people can be traced back to early civilizations, when Palms were grown in Mesopotamia over 5000 years ago. Known for providing high fuel fruit, shade from the desert sun, and the material for constructing tools, the Date Palm is often credited for playing a major role in the proliferation of the human population.
In Roman times, the Palm branch was a symbol of triumph and victory, and its fronds were awarded to champions and war heroes. It was even an ancient Roman unit of measurement.
Not long thereafter, the Palm was given it's own day: Palm Sunday. Though mainly a Christian event meant to celebrate the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, the Palm represents peace and plenty in Judaism, and is mentioned more than 22 times in the Koran, demonstrating its ability to cross cultures.
As modern civilization began to form, the Palm endured as an important symbol, adorning the national flags of Haiti, Guam, and Somoa, as well as the state flags of Florida and South Carolina.
Today, the Palm tree might not have as much importance to the survival of the human race or the religious significance it once had, but it remains a cultural touchstone. In America, the Palm is often associated with a laid back, carpe diem lifestyle and used by marketers who wish to associate their products and services with relaxation, calmness, vacations and beaches. If you want to your interior project to elicit a laid back atmosphere, design with silk Fishtail Palms trees.
The Palm also remains an important provider of tools and food in today's society, including beverages, building materials, fertilizer, oil and fruit, clothing, furniture, jewelry, medicine, and more.
Don't Hold Back
Planning and executing an indoor rainforest using artificial Palm trees isn't for the timid at heart. Think dense and diverse plants and trees, exotic and dangerous species, and thick air you can cut with a knife. Think waterfalls, estuaries, and bold toucan colors. While you may not be able to procure replica parrots, your artificial Palm trees should be just as exotic and varied as the rainforest you're aspiring to replicate. Like most endeavors, you'll get out what you in. Building a rainforest with silk Palms is no exception.
Go Palm or Go Home
Palm trees vary throughout the world, from the coconut Palms of Florida and the desert Palms of California and the middle East, to the more rainforest specific Palms of the Americas and Asia. A combination of Areca Palms, Fishtail Palms, and Bamboo Palms, for example, will provide a richly authentic rainforest look indigenous to Asia and the South Pacific. We can provide you with a brief history of Palm trees to help choose the varieties in your landscape.
To accentuate your Palm trees, select a few artificial plant varieties to round out the theme.
Know The Fire Code
Don't design your rainforest and discover that it won't pass state fire code requirements. Instead, sort it out beforehand. Make sure to use fire retardant foliage and study fire codes throughly, as most states will be very particular at the time of inspection. When it comes to choosing a fire retardant artificial plant there are a few choices: inherently fire retardant foliage or topically fire retardant foliage. See a fire retardant requirement guide for more information.
The odds are that, if you're designing a rainforest exhibit, you'll be installing in a high end museum, eatery, or other attraction. Allocate a dedicated team of seasoned veterans to get the job done quickly and expertly in order to ensure the project is constructed without interfering with other business generating activities.
Fishtail Palms, native to Asia, Indonesia, and the South Pacific, now also grow in Suriname as well as in nurseries in southern Florida. The living Palm tree has slender stem clumps that grow to thirty feet high. Mop-like clusters of flowers develop from the top of a mature Fishtail Palm, and subsequent flower clusters continue to emerge below. The flowers appear in threes, one female flower in between two male ones. Because the Fishtail Palm is monocarpic, the stem dies after the cluster has reached the ground. The Palm clump survives this process as numerous suckers grow at the base of the Palm, producing more stems.
Fishtail palm trees are named for their exotic triangular leaflets, which can reach nine feet in length. The leaves are deep green and leathery with a ragged edge, and Fishtail is the only palm with leaves that are subdivided twice. Similar to other palm trees however, the Fishtail palm tree cannot be pruned back to reduce height, as new growth comes from a high central growing point.
As a leading silk tree and artificial plant manufacturer, our team designs and manufactures silk Fishtail Palm trees at our Minneapolis, MN location. We've designed both a silk Fishtail Palm and a Giant Fishtail Palm tree which is modeled after the living Caryota Mitis Palm. Our silk Fishtail Palm trees can be crafted with our inherently fire retardant foliage, to insure consistent fire protection for your project's specifications. Our silk Fishtail Palm trees are so unique and realistic, our silk Palms and other trees are complimented because they really appears alive and healthy. Our silk Palm leaves resembles the tail fin of an ornamental fish, just like the living Palm, and our silk Palm fronds are light and airy. Fishtail Palm trees are a dominant artificial tree in many faux landscapes. In addition to premium grade foliage specifications, our silk Fishtail Palms are built with natural wood stems.
Silk Palm trees add a wonderful tropical element to indoor habitats. If your commercial project specifies for distinct fake Palm varieties in addition to more common varieties - like Bamboo Palm or Kentia Palm, our team of designers and silk tree manufacturers can implement a custom design for your space. Many faux landscapes have already been emnhanced with a tropical themes that include our Fishtail Palms.
Our team has a combines 50 years of experience in installing our silk trees and artificial plants. We can help you take your tropical themed project from blue print stage to grand opening! We now offer a great source of specification files created in CAD, available by request for Architects and Designers, which include elevation views and plan details.
The Palm tree elicits a very distinct mood and sense of place. Surrounded by Palm trees, people are instantly transported to the tropical beaches and island vacations of their minds. For interior landscapers, artificial Palm trees
can replicate these kinds of environments while providing a variety of logistical benefits. The following includes several tips for your next commercial project.
Set the Theme
Use silk Palm trees as the driving force for a powerful jungle, beach, or tropical theme. There are variety of Palm species, so make sure to understand the different personalities of each. The Areca Palm, for example, is found naturally in the humid forests of Asia and is a good fit for jungle or rainforest themes. Butterfly Palms, meanwhile, more closely resemble the coconut Palms natural to the beaches of Florida and other vacation locales. With your artificial Palm varieties selected, round out your theme with mosses, grasses and other artificial plants.
Even if you aren't adding a full-scale beach or jungle theme, silk Palms can have a substantial effect on a commercial space. Integrating Palms into a lobby area injects a sense of relaxation to the room and helps businesses break the ice with prospective clients. In an office setting, Palms can reduce stress and increase employee productivity by adding a fun, creative element to the environment.
For commercial spaces lacking charm, use silk Palm trees to inject a dose of character. Ideal for shopping centers and other public areas, a tropical Palm like the Giant Fishtail will spice up your space and can provide a elegant counterbalance to an otherwise staid environment.
Divide the Room
In addition to summoning a specific mood and sense of place, lush artificial Palm trees can cover up unsightly building areas and divide spaces. Palms with dense foliage along the entire trunk line like the Kentia and Rhapis will pull double duty expressing a distinct personality while shaping your space.
The history of Palm trees may put landscaping with artificial Palm trees into a cultural perspective for your next commercial project.