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Cliff Date Palm
Distribution & Habitat:
Rocky cliffs, and gorges in the Indian Himalayas.
A medium sized palm, to about 8m tall, almost an intermediate between P. roebelenii, and P. canariensis. It has long, arching, bright green leaves which are self-cleaning (i.e. fall off by themselves), and a smooth, thin trunk, which gives it a much neater appearance than other species of Phoenix.
Sunny, moist, but well drained position in humus rich soil. Prefers warmth, high humidity and high summer rainfall where it is relatively fast growing. In drier summer climates, poor sandy soils suffers leaflet damage, yellowing and trace element deficiencies. Can take heat better with high humidity and one of the Phoenix that wont get fungal problems in the tropics, sub-tropics. Thrives in moist temperate cool climates but not much bellow five degrees Celsius in a dry winter without protection. As a seedling, juvenile it prefers a degree of shade where it will happily and quite quickly emerge through low growing shrubs, thicket and semi deciduous low growing open trees. Very rare to find pure mature specimens in cultivation including botanical gardens. Instantly recognisable by the slender smooth often gently reclining trunk, bright shiny green and twist of the long recurved leaf. Highly ornamental.
[[www.pacsoa.org.au_Sydney_index| Sydney Botanic Gardens.
Mike Gray (Figure 2)
Tom Pavluvcik (Figure 1&3)