Clinostigma harlandii

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Clinostigma (klin-oh-STIG-mah)
harlandii (hahr-LAHN-dee)
Clino har cr.jpg
Scientific Classification
Genus: Clinostigma (klin-oh-STIG-mah)
harlandii (hahr-LAHN-dee)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names
Maman (Local name from Endu, Ambrym Island)

Habitat and Distribution

Clinostigma harlandii is endemic to the ridge crests, and slopes of Vanuatu,
from the islands of Vanua Lava, Espiritu Santo,

Ambae, Ambrym, Pentecost, Efate, Erromango, and Aneityum, from sea level to over 1,500 m. Becoming more common in the upper altitude of its range.


Trunk type: Solitary. Hight: To about 15 meters, (50'). Leaf detail: Pinnately compound, with fine leaflets, and drooping leaflets. Crownshaft to 1.4 meters tall, (4.60') covered with a whitish wax. Editing by edric.


Requirements: Filtered light when young, full sun when mature, consistently moist soil, lots of water. This is a very fast growing palm, and a highly desirable plant for tropical/ warm sub-tropical gardens. well drained position.

PFC for PP.png

Comments and Curiosities

Clinostigma are doubtlessly some of the world's most graceful palms, and C. harlandii from cloud forests at 1000 m (3300 ft) on Vanuatu in the Southwest Pacific is no exception. It grows a tall, slender, smooth, waxy trunk, supported by a cone of stilt roots, and topped by a long, dark green, waxy crownshaft and an elegant crown of feathery, arching leaves. It is an aggressively fast grower, does well in the humid tropical or subtropical garden, and is one of the few in the genus that will tolerate cooler temperatures (but no frost). ( On Ambrym Island the local people eat this species. The 'heart' (immature leaves within the bulbous area at top of trunk) is eaten. It is quite sweet and tastes a bit like a cross between French beans and asparagus. Unfortunately the extraction of the 'heart' kills the tree.

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

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

Special thanks to, 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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