Dypsis nossibensis

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Dypsis (DIP-sis)
nossibensis
(NOHS-sih-behn-sis)
6bc93516-b861-4a65-8548-4f69cc18f686.jpg
Madagascar. Photo by Dr. Henk Beentje, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Dypsis (DIP-sis)
Species:
nossibensis
(NOHS-sih-behn-sis)
Synonyms
None set.
Native Continent
Africa
Africa.gif
Morphology
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Culture
Survivability index
Common names
None.

Habitat and Distribution

Endemic to Northwest Madagascar, only known from Lokobe forest. Moist forest;
Lokobe, Madagascar. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
steep mid slope; alt. 100-185 m.

Description

Solitary palm. TRUNK 5-10 m high, not branching, 7-15 cm in diam., bare and then grey and conspicuously ringed, or with sheath remnants, with (over distal 2 m of trunk) or without a disintegrated fibrous mass; base of trunk with aerial roots; internodes about 7 cm.; base of crown bulbous, 8 cm in diam.; wood hard. LEAVES about 18 in the crown, porrect to arching and held on edge in distal half of the leaf, with the leaflets in one plane; sheath 28-50 cm, 6-9 cm wide, more distally with a central woody part of 3-4 cm wide with two fibrous "wings" of about 4.5 cm wide, with short fine brown tomentum with fibrous tattered margins, and opposite the petiole with a long brown tongue, 100-120 x 5-5.5 cm; petiole 39-40 cm long, proximally 1.5-2.7 x 1.5-2 cm, distally 1.7-2.1 x 1-1.2 cm, convex or channelled with rather sharp margins and a thin grey to red-brown tomentum; rachis about 2.8 m, in mid-leaf 0.8-1.5 cm wide and keeled, with red-brown to grey tomentum but glabrescent; leaflets 62-64 on each side of the rachis, regular, mid-green, glabrous, the proximal 62-86 x 1.1-2.4 cm, median 52-78 x 3.3-5 cm (interval 3-4 cm), distal 16-44 x 0.9-3.5 cm, apices attenuate, main veins 5-7, distinct, midrib prominent adaxially, ramenta few, spaced, rather small, on the abaxial midrib of median leaflets. INFLORESCENCE erect, only a single stage present at one time, branched to 2 orders, 106-150 cm, with spreading or semi-pendulous rachillae; peduncle 75-84 cm long, proximally 4.2-6 x 2.4-3 cm, distally 2.5-2.7 x 1.6-2 cm, green with short reddish tomentum; prophyll 45-64 x 6.5-8 x 2-3 cm, borne at about 6 cm above the base of the peduncle, 2winged, split abaxially; peduncular bract inserted at 15-20 cm, abscising and carried upwards by the lengthening bud, 102-106 x 9.5-18 cm, beaked and closed for 5.5-9 cm, glabrous and pale red-brown abaxially, yel-low-brown adaxially; incomplete peduncular bracts 3-6 x 36 mm; rachis 31-37 cm, proximally 3.5-5 x 2.5-3 cm in diam., with 13-17 branched and 13-16 unbranched first order branches, these puberulous, with bulbous bases and proximally 1.5-2 x 0.4-1 cm; rachillae 25-56 cm, 3-5 mm diam., angular in bud and slightly zigzag, proximally with dense stellate scales, more distal with fewer scales, pitted; rachilla bracts about 2 mm. STAMINATE FLOWERS slightly trigonous; sepals unequal, 3-4 x 4-7 mm, the innermost the largest, fleshy, keeled, hooded, broadly ovate, rounded, with a minute fringe of tiny hairs; petals purplish white, 4.4-4.5 x 5 mm, fleshy, ovate, slightly acute, inserted on the edge of a fleshy receptacle about 3 mm high and 4 mm in diam.; stamens 6, slightly bi-seriate with the antepetalous stamens inserted slightly higher and the anthers shorter; filaments 2.5-3 mm, connate in a basal ring around the pistillode, anthers dorsifixed, the locules parallel, 2.8-3.2 x 1.8-2 mm; pistillode 1.7-1.8 x 1.7 mm, trigonous. PISTILLATE FLOWERS trigonous at base, distinctly asymmetrical, 6 mm high in bud; sepals 4.5-6 x 6-7 mm, unequal, fleshy, keeled, hooded, fringed, imbricate, the innermost largest; petals purplish white, 7-8.3 x 7 mm, broadly ovate, acute, hooded; gynoecium 6- 8 x 4.5-6.5 mm, asymmetrical, the distal part partly split in 3, stigmas short, pyramidal; staminodes 6, 0.4-0.7 mm, flat. FRUIT not seen in mature state, young fruit 11 x 13 mm, asymmetric. EOPHYLL bifid; seedling with 2 scale leaves. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

HB (Dr. Henk Beentje) believes he has seen two trees of this species on the Antsahampano peninsula on the mainland near Nosy Komba, but he was on public transport at the time was unable to make sure. This would not change the conservation status, as the vegetation of this peninsula is also under threat. The type of V. nossibensis consists of an inflorescence and a very young leaf. We have omitted the measurements of the leaf from the above description. NOTE: this name is predated by Chrysalidocarpus lucubensis Becc from 1906, which is a synonym of C madagascariensis Becc (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.

Culture

Cold Hardiness Zone: 10a

Comments and Curiosities

This clearly belongs to the 'Vonitra' group, though it sometimes lacks the distinctive piassava (leaf sheath fibre) on the trunk. The inflorescence has the bulbous bases to the first order branches that are so distinctive for this group, but there are only one or two inflorescences per tree, and the trunk does not branch, which is unlike several other species of this group. The name refers to the island of Nosy Be. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.

Conservation: Critical. Only known from a single forest, in which several palm species, including this one, are felled for planks. Total numbers seen were less than twenty-five. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb.

Uses: Wood used in construction.


External Links

References

Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

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

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. The 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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