Saw Palmetto

Botanical Name: Serenoa repens (syn. Seronoa serrulata) Family: Palmaceae

Common name(s): Saw Palmetto, Sabal, Seronoa


  • Palm tree/bush | Zones 8-11 | 7 feet tall/wide | Stems grow along the ground and upright. Green (and sometimes blue) leaves are the shape of a fan blade with sharp, saw-like edges. Fragrant white flowers in the spring followed by dark purple to black berries resembling grapes.
  • Sun/shade to full shade | Most soils | Tolerates draught and salt | Grows year round


The berries are harvested in Autumn, when ripe. They are dried, often with the seeds removed. Be careful when harvesting, the leaf edges can cut skin or fabric!


Decoction: Bring 1/2-1 teaspoon of the berries to a boil in 1 cup water and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Drink 3x/day.

Tincture: 1-2ml 3x/day


Constituents: Essential oil, dextrose, flavonoids, lipids, polysaccharides, resin, steroids

Actions: Antiandrogenic, Anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, diuretic, endocrine agent, urinary antiseptic

Uses: Enlarged prostate, male tonic (tones and strengthens the male reproductive system), gastro-urinary tract infections

Combinations: Horsetail and hydrangea for treating enlarged prostate glands


Pungent, sweet, warm


I just happen to be heading down to South Carolina this year around the time they say the Saw Palmetto berries are ripe. My parents used to live on Fripp Island in the Saw Palmetto neighborhood. It’s been fun learning about this plant because of that. And I hope to gather some berries while I’m down there!