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CHUSAN PALM

WINDMILL PALM

Trachycarpus fortunei

Palm Family [Arecaceae]

month8may month8jun month8june

category
category8Trees
 
category
category8Deciduous
 
category
category8Broadleaf
 
status
statusZalien
 
flower
flower8cream flower8cream flower8green
male
flower
flower8green
female
type
typeZpanicle
 
stem
stem8round
 
sex
sexZdioecious
 

5th June 2012, Fife, Scotland. Photo: © John Brailsford
A non-native palm tree growing up to 15m tall.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Usually planted for show in gardens. This specimen has had the lower stems and leaves removed.


5th June 2012, Fife, Scotland. Photo: © John Brailsford
Distinctive fan-shaped leaves and the end of stiff stems.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Individual leaflets long, narrow and drooping at the ends, where they often fray, as here.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
 The male flowers are yellow, and hang in drupes. [Female flowers are greenish, and since the tree is dioecious, are on separate plants; this is a male tree]


5th June 2012, Fife, Scotland. Photo: © John Brailsford
Flowers initially 'wrapped' in a sheath.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
The drupes droop.


5th June 2012, Fife, Scotland. Photo: © John Brailsford
Flowers not dissimilar to the individual 'corns' on Maize.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Lower leaf stems have been truncated manually. The rough hairs are the fibrous remains of older leaf bases.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
The fibres are inflammable and a fire hazard.


28th May 2012, Llandudno, North Wales. Photo: © RWD
Intact stems with a single fan-leaf on their ends.


Many similarities to : Dwarf Fan Palm (Chamaerops humils) which belongs to a differing Genus and at up to 5m is one third the height, is rare, and suckers on several stems.

Uniquely identifiable characteristics

Distinguishing Feature :

Originally from Burma, North Vietnam and China it is non-native to the UK, but is found in and around Greater London. It is highly distinctive and dioecious, having male and female flowers on separate plants, the male being yellow, female green.

The leaves are fan-shaped and tend to fray at the ends showing their individual fibres, which were (and possibly still are in some parts of the World) used to make ropes since they are very coarse. The bark of the tree is covered in a thick mat of these coarse fibres, which are all that remains of the lower leaves. The fibres are highly flammable, having a lot of air between them, and represent a fire hazard. This natural thermal insulation will keep the frost from damaging the tree trunk.

The fruits (not shown) are nearly spherical, brown to white, hang in drupes and have dimples like golf balls.


  Trachycarpus fortunei  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Arecaceae  

Distribution
 family8Palm family8Arecaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Trachycarpus
Trachycarpus
(Palm Trees)

CHUSAN PALM

WINDMILL PALM

Trachycarpus fortunei

Palm Family [Arecaceae]