| Veitchia (veet-KEE-ah) |
Fairchild Tropical Garden, Florida. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield.
Habitat and DistributionVeitchia winin is Endemic to Vanuatu Islands.
Stems: Solitary, slender, grayish brown stems to 18 m tall and up to 30 cm in diameter, bulging at the base, with close rings of leaf scars. Leaves: Pinnate, reduplicate, to 3 m long, with an arching rachis holding regularly arranged, drooping leaflets in a single plane. The crown shaft is 95-135 cm long, somewhat swollen at the base, pale green in color, with gray to brown scales at the apex. Petiole is reddish brown. Leaflets are green above and below, lanceolate, with thick marginal ribs, prominent midribs and tiny scales along the veins on the abaxial surface. Leaflet tips are jaggedly toothed (somewhat praemorse). Flowers and fruits: Inflorescence is arching, to 1 m long and branched to three or four orders. Greenish to white male and female flowers are borne on the same inflorescence. The somewhat flattened, ovoid, red fruits are 1.5-2.5 cm long. (idtools.org) Editing by edric.
Field: Erect, solitary palms with close leaf scar rings on the slender grayish brown stems; leaves held mainly horizontally or higher; petiole reddish brown; leaflets drooping and growing in a single plane.
Lab: Lines of tiny white scales along ribs on the underside of the leaflets; obvious dark brown ramenta along the base of the midrib; marginal veins and midrib prominent. (idtools.org)
Cold Hardiness Zone: 10b
Comments and Curiosities
"This tall, thin attractive palm is native to the Vanuatu Islands where it is endangered due to habitat distruction. It has ornamental pendant leaflets closely spaced along the rachis, and a pale gray-green long crownshaft with a bit of a bulge at the bottom. I have seen this palm in all most the Hawaiian botanic gardens, and it's always tall... probably a fast grower. Has been tried often in southern California but usually fails due to our prolonged cool season." (Geoff Stein)
A tall, rather large Veitchia native to moist forests on several Vanuatu (New Hebrides) islands . Its long crownshaft supports around ten big, lightly arching leaves with wide, dark green, pendulous leaflets. A highly ornamental, fast growing palm, best suited to the tropical garden. (RPS.com)
The species is native to Vanuatu, where it grows in the rain forests from the sea level up to about 550 m of altitude. Originally it was particularly widespread in the island of Malakula, where it represented the dominant species, in more recent times the expansion of agriculture has reduced its population.
The genus is dedicated to the Veitch family, owner of a famous London nursery, founded by John Veitch (1725-1839), active from the 18th to the 20th century, who introduced a large number of exotic species in Europe; the specific name is one of those used by the local population.
Common names: winin palm, Malakula palm (English).
The Veitchia winin HEMoore (1957) is an unarmed single species with an erect stem, solitary, slightly enlarged at the base, smooth, of gray color, of 15-18 m of height and 18-25 cm of diameter, on which the rings are visible trace of the hanging of the fallen leaves.
The leaves, around 10 in adult plants, on a short petiole, are pinnate, slightly arched, from horizontal to ascending, up to 3 m long, with about 50 leaflets per side regularly arranged along the rachis on the same level, pendants, long from 20 to 70 cm and from 2 to 10 cm wide, lanceolate with apex apex or truncated obliquely and irregularly toothed, dark green and covered with tiny scales inferiorly. The leaf base completely wraps the stem for a length of 1-1.2 m forming a sort of green tubular capital, covered with a whitish tomentum and tiny reddish brown scales that thicken towards the petiole, where they are particularly dense.
The inflorescences, on a peduncle about 15 cm long and covered with a whitish tomentum, are born under the leaves (infrafogliari), are 60-90 cm long, ramified, with whitish unisexual flowers arranged in triads (a female flower between two males), except in the terminal part where there are only male flowers in pairs.
Cultivable in areas with tropical and humid subtropical climate, adorn the sides of roads and gardens, isolated or in groups © Giuseppe Mazza
Oblong male flowers, about 1 cm long and 0.7 cm in diameter, with 40-60 stamens, globose female flowers, about 0.6 cm long and 0.5 cm, with 3 stigmas.
Ellipsoid fruits of initially green color, then yellow and finally bright red when ripe, of 1,5-1,8 cm of length and about 1 cm of diameter, containing only one ovoid seed, depressed at the base, of about 1 cm of length and 0.8 cm in diameter.
Similar in appearance to the Veitchia arecina Becc. (1921), which is different for the longer male flowers, 1.5 cm, the largest number of stamens, 80-130, and the largest size of the fruits, 2.5-4 cm long and 1.8- 2 cm in diameter.
It reproduces by seed, previously kept in water for two days, in aerated and draining soil kept humid at the temperature 24-26 ° C, with germination times of about 2 months.
Palm tree of great ornamental and landscape value due to its thin stem and elegant crown of leaves, both as an isolated specimen and as a group in parks and gardens, even of relatively small size, or in rows at the sides of streets and avenues.
Fast growing, it can be grown in full sun, except in the first few years of growth when it needs a partial shading, exclusively in areas with tropical and humid subtropical climate. It is not particularly demanding about the soil, but grows best in those deep, well drained and rich in organic substance, slightly acidic to slightly alkaline, kept constantly humid, even if as an adult it can withstand short periods of dryness. It also tolerates saline aerosols, so it can be used near the coasts. (monaconatureencyclopedia.com)
- Glossary of Palm Terms
- MODERN BOTANICAL LATIN
- "Just To Be Clear"
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.