Known from four fragmented sites in the southwest of Madagascar with an extent of occurrence of 2,122 km² and an area of occupancy of 144 km². The species may be locally abundant, however, about 900 mature trees are estimated for the whole distribution range. The subpopulation in Isalo is on the margin of the national park and those in Analavelona occur in a taboo area. There is continuing decline in the extent and quality of the habitat and in mature individuals due to the various threats. This is one of the most popular palm species from Madagascar in international horticulture, and although there are strict trade regulations in place, illegal harvest of seed from the wild still occurs.
The threats to this species include habitat loss through clearance for shifting agriculture, logging, and mining for sapphires. Seeds are harvested from the wild for the horticultural trade and this may impact the regeneration potential of the species.
The species is listed on CITES Appendix II. The subpopulation at Isalo is on the margin of the national park and those in Analavelona occur in a taboo area. Monitoring of the harvesting is required and possible additional enforcement of the controls.