pal·​met·​to | \ pal-ˈme-(ˌ)tō also pä- How to pronounce palmetto (audio) , päl-, pȯ-, pȯl-\
plural palmettos or palmettoes

Definition of palmetto

1 : any of several usually low-growing fan-leaved palms especially : cabbage palmetto
2 : strips of the leaf blade of a palmetto used in weaving

Illustration of palmetto

Illustration of palmetto

palmetto 1

Examples of palmetto in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The resulting image has a human face on the palm of a hand with palmetto leaves draped on the head and shoulders. William Meyers, WSJ, "‘Beyond Truth: Photography After the Shutter’ Review: The Ever-Evolving Image," 23 Feb. 2019 French liquors, of course, dominate many of the recipes, but there are three cocktails on draft, two of which are rum, which firmly remembers that this is a Charleston bar after all and there are palmetto trees lining King Street. Stephanie Burt, Condé Nast Traveler, "15 Best Bars in Charleston," 1 May 2018 Other flavors are watermelon Americano, harvest pear palmetto and black cherry bicicletta. Allison Steele,, "Portable Negronis and spritzes to sip at the beach or pool," 28 June 2018 Led by Major Dade on horseback, the blue-uniformed U.S. troops march out in two lines, shouldering muskets and pulling a six-pounder cannon through the pine and palmetto brush. Vincent Crampton,, "Explore Florida's Sumter County: The massacre that sparked a war," 6 May 2018 The Seminole tribes drove out much of European settlement in the 1700s, becoming the primary ranchers of Florida and allowing huge herds to roam wild in the wetlands, palmetto plains and grassy prairies. Vincent Crampton,, "Explore Florida's Hardee County: Where Cracker history finds a home," 6 May 2018 Rich soil topping the salt dome fostered the growth of palmettos and ancient oaks drooping with Spanish moss. Tristan Baurick,, "Tabasco's homeland fights for survival in Louisiana against storms and rising seas," 27 Jan. 2018 Stylized floral beading evoked magnolias and water lilies sculpted the sides of the bodice, while intersecting trails of palmetto fronds defined the basque waistline and lattice through the skirt. Sue Strachan,, "The Atlanteans ball celebrates Louisiana," 20 Feb. 2018 Among the decorations is one of South Carolina’s famous palmettos, which is the official state tree. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, "Bargain hunter paid $20 for old South Carolina teapot. It auctioned for $800,000! | Charlotte Observer," 25 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'palmetto.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of palmetto

1615, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for palmetto

modification of Spanish palmito, from palma palm, from Latin

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about palmetto

Statistics for palmetto

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for palmetto

The first known use of palmetto was in 1615

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for palmetto


pal·​met·​to | \ pal-ˈme-tō How to pronounce palmetto (audio) \
plural palmettos or palmettoes

Kids Definition of palmetto

: a low-growing palm with leaves shaped like fans

More from Merriam-Webster on palmetto

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with palmetto

Comments on palmetto

What made you want to look up palmetto? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


characterized by aphorism

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!