Serenoa repens (2)

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Figure 1. S. repens in habitat, Lake Placid, Florida

Unless someone can furnish me proof otherwise, I believe these to be the world's tallest Serenoa repens. I found this clump (around 50 total of various heights) growing here at Lake Placid, Florida. The tallest one measured in at 25 feet high over all. Two others exceeded 24 feet in over all height. I checked the Florida Almanac (Champion Tree section) and they list two co-champions of Serenoa repens, the tallest being a diminutive 21 feet in overall height (just kidding, of course) located at Fort Pierce, and another one, 17 feet in overall height, located at Withlacoochee State Forest. While the ones I found are the tallest, they do lack in other criteria, mainly they have smaller diameter calipers and the crowns are smaller than the existing co-champions. The Champion Tree criteria rates all champion trees on overall height, caliper diameter, and crown spread. I informed my (here in Highlands County, Florida) local chapter president of the Southeast Native Plant Society and he measured the repens. He told me he nominated the S. repens for Florida Champions at his summer meeting in Tallahassee, and that they were subsequently declared co-champions with the other two described above.

Figure 2. S. repens
Figure 3. S. repens

Contributed by:

Walter Darnell
(from a post to the
IPS PalmTalk on 16 Dec 2002).

External Links:

Kew, PalmWeb, JSTOR, Trebrown

Google, Google Images, Flickr, PACSOA Forums, PalmTalk