Phoenix roebelenii Description
Phoenix roebelenii (Arecaceae) is also known as pygmy date palm, dwarf date palm, miniature date palm or Robellini palm. It is a species of date palm which is native to Southeastern Asia, Africa, North Laos, Southwestern China and Northern Vietnam. This palm has become very popular over the previous five decades and can be seen in many areas of the world due to its small size. It is a small to medium-sized, slow-growing tree which reaches up to 3 to 6 ft. in height. The trunk is quite thin ranging from 3-6 inches in diameter but it is thick with fibers right below the crown of leaves. The overall crown is rounded with 30 to 50 leaves. The leaves are grey-green in colour, about 60-120 cm long, spiny at the base of crown and pinnate with 100 leaflets arrange in a single plane. Each leaflet is about 15-25 cm long and 1 cm in width. The inflorescence is about 45 cm long and produces yellowish and small flowers. The fruit is produced on female plants, drupe, edible, thinly fleshed and 1 cm small.The seeds get black when mature and about half an inch or smaller in size.
Landscaping ideas of Phoenix roebelenii
Phoenix roebelenii is a popular and attractive ornamental palm.It has manageable size therefore it can be often grown in parks, gardens, yards and can be seen in shopping centers and restaurants.They can be planted in pots indoors and outdoors, it the regions are without frost. It is the good remover of formaldehyde and xylene from the surrounding atmosphere, therefore recommended to plant in homes.
How to propagate Phoenix roebelenii
Phoenix roebelenii can be propagated through seeds and suckers usually in spring. The seeds are mostly collected from wild habitat and sown in a pot with a mixture of moist peat and perlite (a type of volcanic glass). Then the pot is placed in the indirect sunlight and covered with the plastic bag in order to prevent the moisture from escaping. Germination of seeds takes 3-6 months and give a blade of grass like seedling. The growing plant is repotted to its regular mix after the sprouting of seedlings. The suckers are removed with roots and then placed them in the mix soil.
How to take care Phoenix roebelenii
- Phoenix roebelenii grow in tropical and subtropical areas.
- It prefers well drained and aerated soil.
- It prefers optimum temperature of 16-29˚C and therefore grow as a house plant in cooler areas.
- It requires partial shade to full bright sunlight.
- It prefer slightly moist soil during growing season.
- Humidity can be maintained by placing gravels and pebbles in the drainage dish to hold moisture.
- Little pruning is required to develop a strong structure.
- If pruning is not done, the old leaves hangs down the near the trunk and the plant become very unsightly and susceptible to diseases.
- It is resistant to pests and highly tolerant to soil variation and moderately tolerant to drought.
- However it is susceptible to leaf spot and scales diseases.
- Water-soluble fertilizer should be used weekly during summer and spring to nourish the plant.