Well, I finished the palm tree. It came out as I had envisioned, but for one thing. I had wanted a more graceful curve to the trunk, but with the weight of the top, I felt I had to straighten it somewhat. I made the wired fronds out of light green gumpaste/fondant and cut them out with a fantasy leaf cutter. I shredded the leaves with a scalpel and dried them in an apple tray with cotton to help hold their shape. When dry I dusted them with petal dust, set with steam. I wired them together as I would a flower, the smallest top fronds first, then taped it to the trunk. The trunk was two lengths of aluminum wire twisted with foil over and wrapped in floral tape. I didn't use the pipe cleaners as I found the foil was sufficient. I made the frond scars with circles of gumpaste with the tops cut off. I made the supporting wire long enough to hopefully penetrate the cake board to secure it. Yes, I will be using a bubble tea straw to protect the cake from the wire, even though it is tape wrapped.
I took pics of it now in case it doesn't make it to the cake!
I really like to make flowers, but I am starting to like trees, too. lol
I've heard so many have trouble uploading pics here, so it is in my photos.
I hope this helps anyone else who wants to make a palm tree.