Dypsis aquatilis

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Dypsis (DIP-sis)
aquatilis (ah-kwah-TIHL-iss)
Madagascar, photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Dypsis (DIP-sis)
aquatilis (ah-kwah-TIHL-iss)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Dypsis aquatilis is endemic to Madagascar. Manantenina.
Madfagascar. Photo by Dr. Mijoro Rakotoarinivo/Kew.
"Riverside and in the water"


Solitary. Trunk, very short, if not non-existant (Guillaumet). LEAVES: sheath unknown; petiole part on type 25 cm long, proximally 2 cm in diam., deeply channelled, rapidly tapering to the distal diam. 0.8 cm and slightly channelled; rachis about 8 mm in diam. in upper/mid-leaf; leaflets regular, close, the median 21-23.5 x 1.2-1.3 cm, the distal 10-18 x 0.4-1.1 cm, main vein 1, apices unequally acute, indument: adaxial midrib as well as margins with small dark ramenta, abaxial minor veins with dense but scattered minute scales. INFLORESCENCE branched to 2 orders; peduncle at least 21.5 cm and probably considerably longer, 5 x 3 mm in diam., glabrous; bracts at least 3 major ones, opening near the apex only, the most distal tubu lar bract 5.5 cm long; non-tubular peduncular bract about 1 cm long; rachis (one seen) 27.5 cm long, with 12 branches, the proximal 4 or 5 bifurcate; rachis bracts proximally about 5 mm long; rachillae 17-24 cm long, 1.5 mm in diam., glabrous, with spaced triads. STAMINATE FLOWERS with sepals 1.5-1.8 x 1-2 mm; petals 1.8-2.4 x 1.6-1.7 mm, acute to obtuse; stamens 6, didymous, uniseriate, the filaments 1-1.4 x 0.5-0.6 mm, flat and slightly triangular, anthers 0.4-0.5 mm high, 0.7-0.8 mm wide, dorsifixed; pistillode 1.7-2 x 0.8 mm. PISTILLATE FLOWERS unknown. FRUIT unknown. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

Distinct from all other species in the "Vonitra" group by the leaves with scattered scales and much ramenta, as well as by their small size. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.


Cold Hardiness Zone: 10a

Comments and Curiosities

Insufficiently known species. This species is known from a single incomplete specimen. The collector described it as growing beside a river and in the water. The inflorescence seems to have a long peduncle and is somewhat reminiscent of those of members of the "Vonitra" group. We are tempted to suggest that this is a stemless rheophyte and those with a mind to try to refind it should perhaps look for a palm with a habit reminiscent of Chamaedorea cataractarum. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.

Conservation: Uncertain. Probably Endangered, since it seems to be restricted to a single area. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

Special thanks to Geoff Stein, (Palmbob) for his hundreds of photos.

Special thanks to Palmweb.org, Dr. John Dransfield, Dr. Bill Baker & team, for their volumes of information and photos.

Glossary of Palm Terms; Based on the glossary in Dransfield, J., N.W. Uhl, C.B. Asmussen-Lange, W.J. Baker, M.M. Harley & C.E. Lewis. 2008. Genera Palmarum - Evolution and Classification of the Palms. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. All images copyright of the artists and photographers (see images for credits).

Dransfield, J. & Beentje, H. 1995. Palms of Madagascar. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and The International Palm Society.

Many Special Thanks to Ed Vaile for his long hours of tireless editing and numerous contributions.

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