| Livistona (liv-iss-TOH-nah) |
Northern Territory, Australia. Photo by Dr. J. L. Dowe.
Habitat and DistributionAustralia. Northern Territory and Western Australia.
Functionally dioecious palm. Trunk to 17 m tall, 15-30 cm in diameter breast high, leaf scars narrow, internodes narrow, grey, petiole stubs not persistent. Leaves 25-40 in a globose crown; petiole arching, 80-200 cm long, pruinose, adaxially flat, margins with single, curved, blunt, black thorns, confined to the proximal portion; leaf-base fibres moderately prominent, fine, persistent; lamina costapalmate, regularly segmented, subcircular, 80-100 cm long, coriaceous, adaxially grey green or bluish green, strongly pruinose, dull, abaxially similar; lamina divided for 55-65% of its length, with 40-56 segments, depth of apical cleft 55-70% of the segment length, apical lobes attenuate, rigid; parallel veins 9-11 each side of midrib; transverse veins thinner than parallel veins. Inflorescences unbranched at the base, not sexually dimorphic, 50-150 cm long, not extending beyond the limit of the crown, branched to 4 orders; partial inflorescences 5-9; prophyll not seen; peduncular bract 1; rachis bracts loosely sheathing, fibrous with age, densely tomentose; rachillae 1-3 cm long, glabrous. Flowers solitary or paired, funnel shaped, 2-4 mm long, cream to pale yellow; sepals triangular, 0.7-0.8 mm long, membranous, acute; petals narrowly ovate, 1.2-1.5 mm long, acute; stamens about 0.9 mm long. Fruit globose to ellipsoid, 8-15 mm long, about 10 mm in diam., dull dark reddish brown to black; epicarp smooth; suture line extends for most of the length of the fruit; mesocarp thin, fibrous; endocarp thin, brittle; pedicel 0.5-1 mm long. Seed globose, about 9 mm wide. Eophyll 3-ribbed. (Dowe, J.L.)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.
Livistona victoriae was described by Rodd (1998) based on a collection from Victoria River Crossing, Rodd 2934, and named with references to the species occurring in the vicinity of the Victoria River and also to complete the trio of names of L. alfredii and L. mariae, species named for Queen Victoria's son and daughter-in-law respectively. Previously the palm had informally been known as "Livistona sp. Victoria River" (Jones, 1996). Livistona victoriae is a moderate canopy palm to 17 m tall; leaves are moderate and regularly segmented; segment apices are rigid, and with a bifurcate cleft to 70% of the segment length; the inflorescence is unbranched, not extending beyond the limit of the crown, and with up to nine partial inflorescences; bracts are loosely sheathing; flowers are cream to pale yellow; fruit are globose to ellipsoid, to 15 mm long to 10 mm wide, and dull dark reddish brown to black at maturity. (Dowe, J.L.)/Palmweb.
Likes it very hot, and not very humid, but with ample water. Cold Hardiness zone: 9b
Comments and Curiosities
Phenology: Flowers Mar-Dec; fruits Dec-July.
Conservation: Lower risk, conservation dependent. (Dowe, J.L.)/Palmweb.
"This is one of the more fastidious of the Livistona species, growing quite slowly and requiring full sun and heat for survival. It also is one of the more drought tolerant species, but grows better if given some water regularly, especially when small. It seems fairly cold sensitive and struggles through long cool winters such as the ones seen in southern California... definitely does better in the deserts out here, or in warm, sunny, wind-protected locations closer to the coast. The better draining the soil, the better- rots in moist, cold soils. Has a nice blue-silvery-grey to leaves and reminds one of a slender Brahea armata (Mexican blue Fan palm). Native to northern Australia." (Geoff Stein)
Escarpments and gorges form the habitat of the Victoria River Fan Palm (Livistona victoriae) which has a limited distribution between the Victoria River Basin in Australia's Northern Territory, and the Bungle Bungle Range. The palms are shown here growing at an escarpment in Gregory National Park, Northern Territory, Australia. Photo by Michael Schwab.
- Glossary of Palm Terms
- MODERN BOTANICAL LATIN
- "Just To Be Clear"
- Click on Arecaceae, for list of photos
- Revision of Livistona (Arecaceae) in Australia, By Dr. A.N. Rodd
- Australian Palms, By John Leslie Dowe
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).
Dowe, J.L., A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae). A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae).
Many Special Thanks to Ed Vaile for his long hours of tireless editing and numerous contributions.