R. oleracea grows along the edges of rain forests in northeastern Colombia, northern Venezuela and in the islands of the Lesser Antilles. The trunk can reach as high as 130' in habitat. There are some at the Lyon Arboretum in Honolulu that to me seem to be pushing 100' in height. To hold up this massive palm, the trunk can reach diameters of up to 2 feet.
Although it comes from places w/lots of rain and moisture, it is growing very nicely here in Wai`anae. I bought this as a conetainer from Kapoho Palms back in maybe 1994 or 95'. Here is a picture of it in 1999, notice the height of the bottom of the crownshaft is just about even with my waist.
One year later in 2000 it shows a lot of growth. Although I'm not standing up straight, you can see the trunk height is at least 1 foot higher.
Four and 1/2 years later in July of 2005 it is beginning to look massive. Yea, I know this part of the yard is a junk pile.