Palm trees are trees in the family Arecaceae, sometimes referred to as Palmae. Palms are widely distributed in the tropical regions of the world, with some species venturing into subtropical or even temperate zones, and there are around 2,600 individual species of palm tree, all told.
Basically, palm trees break into two main types. Some produce a single tall shoot, but others produce a cluster of shoots close to the ground, creating more of a thicket than a single distinctive trunk. While the leaves of palms are compound, meaning that multiple leaflets are attached to the same stalk, they may be palmately or pinnately compound. Palmately compound leaves splay out like a fan, or the palm of the hand, while pinnately compound leaves have a feathery look.