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Fiji Fan Palm
Distribution & Habitat:
Tonga, Fiji islands, introduced on many pacific islands. Typically tropical dry forests with mean monthly temperatures ranging from 22°C in July to 28°C in January. Rainfall averages 1800 mm per year with most falling during December-April summer and almost drought conditions prevailing during the cooler months.
An attractive, solitary fan palm 7-10m tall, with a trunk up to 30cm in diameter. Leaves up to 1.8m long and almost as wide, the leaf blade is the same glabrous dull green on both upper and lower surfaces, without any scales or spots underneath. The spadices are shorter than the petioles. The spherical fruit is 11-12 mm in diameter, turning red then black at maturity. The seed is 7mm in diameter. (Fig 2&3)
One of the most attractive Pritchardias, grown widely in tropical countries and sought after by collectors.
Fresh seed germinates within 30 days. Plant in a sunny, moist, but well drained position. Prefers tropical conditions, will not grow in temperate climates and is marginal where winter temperatures go below 5°C. Slow growing. Well suited to coastal areas.
[[www.pacsoa.org.auplacesSantaCruzdefault The Palmetum of Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Chris King (Text & Figure 5)
Melany Chapin (Figure 1&2)
Greg Roulinavage (Figure 3)
Carlo Morici (Figure 4)