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Ravenala madagascariensis

Pronunciation: Ra-ven-ah-la mad-uh-gas-kar-ee-en-sis
Family: Strelitziaceae (bird-of-paradise family)
Common Name: Traveler's palm, traveler's tree
Plant Type:
  • trees, shrubs
Height to: 30-60'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
  • 50 to 40ºF ZONE 11
Sun Exposure:
  • part sun
  • full sun
Bloom Description: The green palmlike trunk grows up to 1 ft (0. 3 m) in diameter and displays distinctive trunk leaf scar rings. Multitudes of small creamy white flowers compose an inflorescence up to 12in (30. 5 cm) long. A mature traveler's palm may bloom year round and produce brown fruits that contain light blue seeds.
Soil Type: Tolerates sandy and clayey soils with good drainage, and thrives in rich, moist and loamy soils. It responds well to fertilizer and is considered a heavy feeder. Some growers feed their traveler's palm monthly with a light application of commercial tropical plant food or a plant food specifically formulated for palms. Alternatively, a slow release fertilizer (e. G. , an 18-18-18) may be used during the summer growing season. This vigorous plant is considered very disease and pest resistant.
Propagation: The traveler's palm may be propagated by seeds or by division and replanting of the attractive clumps (or suckers) formed at the base of the plant.
Native to: Ravenala madagascariensis, the traveler's palm is endemic to (occurs nowhere but... ) secondary forests on the island of madagascar which is off the coast of east africa in the indian ocean.
Notes for Identification: The traveler's palm is considered to be one of nature's most spectacular trees and is a superb accent plant. Plant the traveler's palm outdoors in a tropical landscape that is free from frosts with overhead room to accommodate the large crown of foliage. Shelter the traveler's palm from strong winds, otherwise the leaves become tattered. Traveler's palm can also be grown indoors and in greenhouses where lighting is plentiful and where the container in which it is growing restricts plant size. The traveler's palm gets its name from the fact that thirsty travelers could find stores of water in many parts of the plant including the leaf folds, flower bracts and inside each of the hollow leaf bases each of which may hold up to one quart of water! Although not a true palm, the traveler's palm is considered one of the most striking and unique trees in nature. It is perfect for that special accent in your tropical landscape.
Located in: Trees, Shrubs
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