Neoveitchia storckii

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Neoveitchia (neh-oh-vih-KEE-ah) storckii (stork'-ee)
Neoveitchia flower 2.jpg
Hawaii, Flowers.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Neoveitchia (neh-oh-vih-KEE-ah)
Species: storckii (stork'-ee)
Synonyms
None set.
Native Continent
Oceania
Oceania.gif
Morphology
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Culture
Survivability index
Common names
Vilaito Palm.

Habitat and Distribution

This interesting palm is endemic to the island of Viti Levu in the Fiji Islands.
FIJI: Phillips Garden, September 1988. Photo: L. H. Bailey Hortorium.
Vilaito is an emergent palm which grows in the alluvial plains of the middle Rewa River and the nearby rolling foothills. Much, if not all of this, is secondary forest and undergoing steady clearing for agriculture while the eastern bank of the Rewa is a major mahogany plantation. Neoveitchia survives quite well in open areas and degraded forest. This palm was formerly believed to be restricted to a small area of secondary forest near Naqali in central Vitilevu, but Dylan Fuller and associates showed that it was, in fact, more widespread with a discontinuous population, covering more than 50 km2 on the western side of the Rewa River. More recent observations have found it on the eastern bank of the Rewa River too, surviving in the extensive mahogany plantations of Nukurua, Tailevu, and to the west some way up the Waidina River.

Description

Vilaito is a solitary, moderately stout palm with a light coloured trunk on an expanded base. The trunk normally grows up to 12 m in height and is stout, at about 25 cm in diameter. However, it may grow up to 20 m in height when growing under a high canopy of plantation mahogany. This palm has a full, leafy canopy of 12-15 fronds per crown; the fronds up to 5 m in length with heavy leaflets and a characteristic lateral twist to 90o. The crown shaft is distinctive being incompletely formed and is a glossy dark green to black. A bulky inflorescence arises below the crown shaft, initially white before turning olive green. The fruit mature only on the basal third of the inflorescence, the remainder forming conspicuous white tassels. The fruit are large, up to 5 cm long and 2.5 cm in diameter, and are dull red when mature. Editing by edric.

Culture

Distinctly tropical in its requirements. Likes a lot of water.

Comments and Curiosities

Etymology: The specific epithet; Honors Jacob Storck, the 19th century German assistant to botanist Berthold Seemann.


External Links

References

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).


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

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