Livistona chinensis is an evergreen, fan-leaved, solitary-stemmed palm tree growing up to 15 metres tall. The unbranched stem can be 20 – 30cm in diameter. The plants is both harvested from the wild and also cultivated for its leaves, which are widely used to make fans in China, as well as being used to make hats, brooms, raincoats etc. The plant is also widely grown as an ornamental in the tropics and subtropics.
The leaves are used for making fans. They are also used for manufacturing rain hats and coats, brooms etc. The fibres, extracted from the sheath and the petiole of the leaves, are made into cordage.