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by : BTF

As I Wander...

Living in tropical Malaysia, we tend to take the hot humid weather, thundery rainstorms and the spectrum of wild evergreen plants as a given.

Recently, I noticed more exotic plants making its way into landscaped home gardens, recreational parks, frontages of shopping malls and
commercial buildings.

Along kerb sides of residential streets and busy motorways, palms, trees and flowering plants make pleasant and interesting fringes.

This is a record of the various species "as I see it" for I am in awe of palms. Hence, my premise for this blog is that the global garden,
i.e. every physical garden (tended or untended), becomes a part of my, simply said, cyber palm garden. ;-)

Please feel free to share your thoughts or comments.

Thank you for visiting!

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Mangrove Fan Palm

Botanical Name : Licuala spinosa

Native to all South-east Asian countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines. The palm is so named, apparently it thrives in swampy, muddy conditions like the mangroves. A dynamic looking cluster palm, it's also known as the Spiny Licuala and the Good Luck Palm.  Oh yes, a thicket of luck will come in handy! 

The cluster of thin stems gives it a bushy look. Actually, this particular specimen is quite huge and wide so given the right conditions, it can grow quite tall too.  The leaves are almost circular in shape and made up of several broken pleated leaflets with squared ends.

spiny petioles

unbroken young leaf
orange berries
Noticed the fresh young leaf appears almost a full fan shape, gently split into separate leaflets as it matures.  As yet, there are no sprigs of inflorescence nor red round fruits to be seen.  If one observes closely, the petioles are spiny, like the thorns in roses, throughout so have to be mindful when handling.

This specimen grown outdoors in full sun looks handsome and healthy.  Understand they do equally well in potted containers, albeit a little slow growing.

Nevertheless, my feeling is that palm lovers - growers and hobby enthusiasts alike, have loads of patience in their DNA department since that's almost a resolute primary requisite to own/grow any.

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