Dypsis remotiflora

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Dypsis (DIP-sis)
Rare Palm Seeds.com
Scientific Classification
Genus: Dypsis (DIP-sis)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Clustering
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Endemic to Madagascar, where it occurs between
Encinitas, CA. Photo by Nick (ellidro)
Farafangana and Mangerivola.


Solitary (?) or clustered (?) palm. STEM to 1 m tall, at least 1 cm in diam. (as suggested by diameter of leaf sheaths). Leaf sheaths of unknown length, about 1 cm in diam., striate, bearing abundant dark brown laciniate scales. LEAF to 40 cm long, including petiole about 9 mm long, about 4 mm wide, broadly triangular in cross section, bearing scattered dark brown scales; rachis 22-29 cm; leaflets 3-4 on each side of the rachis, subopposite or almost alternate (basal leaflets only); basal pair 5-7 x 0.3-0.7 cm, mid-leaf pair to 23 x 5.5 cm, apical pair widely divergent, to 13 x 4.5 cm, somewhat sigmoid; both lamina surfaces with very sparse, minute, brown, punctiform scales. INFLORESCENCE only partially represented in type, branching to 4 orders; prophyll, peduncular bract and peduncle not represented; rachis at least 35 cm long, somewhat sinuous, it and all branches glabrescent; rachillae very numerous, very slender, sinuous, 1.5-4 cm long, about 0.2 mm in diam., each bearing about 3-4 triads only, about 7 mm distant; rachilla bracts triangular, about 0.5 mm long. STAMINATE FLOWER about 1.0 x 0.8 mm; sepals ± rounded, imbricate, slightly keeled, 0.5 x 0.6 mm; petals ± elliptic in outline, valvate, 1.0 x 0.7 mm; stamens 3, antesepalous, filaments very short, about 0.2 x 0.1 mm, connective broad abaxially, anthers 0.3 x 0.1 mm, ± didymous; staminodes absent; pistillode absent. PISTILLATE FLOWER slightly smaller than the staminate; sepals imbricate, about 0.5-0.6 mm; petals basally imbricate, distally val-vate, about 0.7 x 0.4 mm; staminodes 3, minute, dentiform; ovary about 0.7 x 0.4 mm, ellipsoid, stigma terminal, slightly curved. Mature FRUIT ellipsoid, 9.5 x 4 mm. SEED ellipsoid, 6 x 3.5 mm; endosperm homogeneous, embryo lateral. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb Editing by edric.

This species is remarkable for its extremely slender rachillae with few remote triads of flowers. It is known only from the type. There are two entries for Ambadikala in the US Army Gazetteer for Madagascar, one at 23°19á S 47°24á E, the other at 18° 15á S 48° 56á E., of which only the former is recorded on the 1: 500,000 Series maps of Madagascar. This lies in the vicinity of Farafangana. (J. Dransfield and H. Beentje. 1995)/Palmweb (see below)


Cold Hardiness Zone: 10a

Comments and Curiosities

Recorded from two different sites but only seen recently in Mangerivola where about 20 individuals have been recorded. The extent of occurrence is estimated to be about 5,045 km², but this will be considerably smaller if the Farafangana subpopulation is confirmed to be gone. The estimated area of occupancy is 14 km², and given that there are two locations and continuing decline in extent and quality of habitat, this would qualify the species for an Endangered listing. However, as only about 20 mature plants habe been observed in the field, it seems unlikely that the population size would exceed 50 mature individuals, hence the species qualifies for a Critically Endangered listing, based on the small population size. (Rakotoarinivo, M. & Dransfield, J. 2012)

Presumed extinct in its natural habitat, this dwarf species from Madagascar has recently been rediscovered in the southeast of the Island. It has a thin stem topped by a sparse crown of leaves with only 3-4 pairs of rather wide leaflets. Great for the understorey in the tropical garden. (RPS.com)

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).

J. Dransfield & H. Beentje, The Palms of Madagascar. 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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