Linospadix palmerianus

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Linospadix (lihn-oh-SPAH-dihks)
SoCal. Photo by Geoff Stein
Scientific Classification
Genus: Linospadix (lihn-oh-SPAH-dihks)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Clustering
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Queensland, Australia. Confined to Mts. Bartle Frere and Bellenden-Ker. In rain
Just below the summit of Bartle Frere. L. palmeriana only grows on Bartle Frere and Bellenden Ker. northern Queensland, Australia. Photo by tanetahi
forest, on granite, metamorphics, and occasionally on shallow basalts overlying metamorphics from 300 to 1600 m elevation. (J.L. Dowe. 1997)


Clustering small palm. Stems 1-6, to 2 m tall, 8-20 mm in diam.; internodes elongate, green; crown with 8-12 leaves. Leaves regularly segmented with united pinnae, most often with two segments either side of rachis, infrequently simply bifid, segments with broad bases, or regularly and finely pinnate; petiole 5.5-13 cm long; pinnae 2-24 per leaf, dull to semiglossy dark green above, lighter green below; midrib prominent on both surfaces, veins numerous and prominent on both surfaces, terminal pinnae broader than laterals; lamina, when backlit under 10X magnification, with numerous circular clear "cells" to 0.1 mm wide, linearly parallel to midrib and veins. Inflorescence to 60 cm long. Staminate flowers squatly bullet-shaped in bud, glabrous, to 3 X 2 mm; petals apically rounded, green at anthesis, not widely opening, deeply striated in the dried state; stamens 6-9; connective not extending beyond the anthers; anthers oblong. Fruit elongate/cylindricall, 0 -15 cm X 5-7 mm, yellow or red at maturity; epicarp smooth or with barely discernible rugose appearance. Seed elongate/ellipsoid. (J.L. Dowe. 1997)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

In the protologue for this species, Bailey refers to the distribution of this species on Mt. Bartle Frere ". . . the base of the leading spur, at about 2 000 feet, and from that to the summit of the south peak, an altitude of over 5 000 feet." Of what were possibly many specimens collected from this area, at least two are extant: BRI [AQ75548] from Meston's Spur at high elevation and MEL [unnumbered] from "the base of the mountain" to quote Bailey's hand-written notes attached to this collection. The former is chosen here as the lectotype as it best represents the taxon as interpreted in this work. (J.L. Dowe. 1997)/Palmweb.


"Rare Linospadix, but seems to do OK in Southern California near the southern coast. Needs moisture and protection from drying winds. Another suckering Linospadix with bifid or only partially divided feather leaves." (Geoff Stein)

Comments and Curiosities

Etymology: Named for Edward Palmer, M. L. A., of whom Bailey wrote "indebted for much useful information as to the uses made by the aboriginals of our indigenous plants." (J.L. Dowe. 1997)/Palmweb.

Conservation: Rare (Queensland Herbarium 1994) (J.L. Dowe. 1997)/Palmweb.

A small, clustering palm from northeastern Queensland, Australia, where it grows in rainforests up to about 1600 m (5200 ft.). It produces slender, canelike stems to about 1.5 m (5 ft.) tall. The small leaves have just a few wide leaflets. It tolerates cool conditions and some frost. (

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).

J.L. Dowe, A Revision of Linospadix in Australia, with the Description of a New Species. 1997. 1997. A Revision of Linospadix in Australia, with the Description of a New Species. Principes 41: 192-197, 211-217.

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

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