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Distribution & Habitat:
Growing in vallies in central Kauai at around 400-900 metres elevation,
A medium sized forest palm genetically similar to P. hardyi and P. limahulensis, it has a slender trunk up to 10 metres, a spherical crown with more than 30 leaves, long petioles covered with tan-rusty coloured felt indument, leaf blades slightly more than than 1 metres long, dotted underneath with minute tan scales, smooth obovoid/pyriform fruits Purple black when ripe, 20-40 mm long and 12-21 mm wide.
P. perlmanii was discovered in 1991 and described by Gemmill in 1998.
Illustrating how vulnerable these palms are to loss, at the time of discovery, there were around 30 palms in one grove, but 10 were lost due to Hurricane Iniki in 1992. As there are only about 500 palms left in habitat, it is considered threatened.
Has been cultivated for in situe conservation purposes. Not yet known in garden cultivation.
Chris King (Text).
David H. Lorence,
National Tropical Botanical Garden (Figure 1,23&4).