It is believed that the coconut palm tree is native to Southeast Asia and now several varieties grow throughout the tropics and in some warmer subtropical areas. The growth rate and size depends on the variety.
The taller varieties of the coconut palm tree, Cocos nucifera, can grow to a height of 80 to 100 feet; however, the average height is typically 50 to 60 feet. The Malayan Dwarf cultivar grows to an average height of 30 to 60 feet.
Coconut palm trees have a smooth, slender, light-gray trunk. The trunk grows in a leaning and curved fashion with a slightly swollen base. The leaves, called fronds, grow at the top of the tree and can reach lengths of 18 feet and widths of 4 feet.
The coconut fruit is typically oval, 15 inches in length, 12 inches in width and has a thick fibrous husk that surrounds a nut. The tree starts producing coconuts at 6 to 10 years of age and continues to produce until the age of 80. Each coconut palm produces 50 to 200 fruits per year depending on the variety and climate.