A solitary, massive, drought tolerant, slow growing, monoecious palm. Common in cultivation, locally common in the wild. It has a smooth, grey trunk, 15.2 m. (50 ft.) tall, 45.7 cm. (18 inch) diameter with spaced ring leaf scars, and huge partially segmented, palmate (fan) leaves, 1.8 m. (6 ft.) long, 1.8 m. (6 ft.) wide, bluish-green above and beneath.
Leaves: 25 - 30 forming a rather dense, rounded crown, bluish-green or silverish-green, petiole 1 -1.5 m long, with curved, sometimes bifid thorns along margins; blade divided to about the middle in 40 - 60 rigid leaflets.
Brahea armata can tolerate freezing temperatures to about -12°C (10.4°F). It naturally occurs in open, sun exposed, montane or lowland hilly locations, and should be planted to maximise sunshine exposure. Under extreme freezing conditions we recommend you keep this palm as dry as possible, which will usually mean constructing a glass or plastic roof over the plant to keep rain off. Any cover placed over this palm during times of rain or during cold nights must be removed or vented during hours of sunshine or the plant could be severely heat exhausted.
Northwestern Mexico (Baja California, Sonora): desert canyons and cliffs on rocky soils, at low to medium elevations.