Ravenala madagascariensis, commonly called traveller's tree or traveller's palm, is a large tree-like plant which is native to moist forests in Madagascar where it will grow over time to 30-50' tall. It has now been planted in frost free areas around the world, including far southern Florida into the Keys, southern Texas, southern California and Hawaii. This plant features an unbranched trunk (to 12" diameter) which is topped by a fan-shaped single plane of enormous, long-stalked, banana-like, deep green leaves (20-30 per trunk). Each leaf blade is 5-10' long by 2-3' wide and appears at the end of a thick, grooved leaf stalk (petiole) which is as long or longer than the leaf blade. Leaf margins are sometimes split as is the case with some bananas. Up to one quart of rain water will accumulate in the expanded and cupped base of each leaf stalk, thus giving rise to the common names for this plant which suggests an emergency drinking water source for travellers in need. Showy 3-petaled white flowers in cymes rise from boat-shaped spathes in a manner reminiscent of this plant's bird-of-paradise (Strelitzia) relative. Flowers bloom in summer plus sporadically throughout the rest of the year. Flowers are followed by woody capsules (to 3 1/2" long) containing edible seeds covered by bright blue arils. In early years, the trunk of this plant is subterranean (not visible), with the fan of leaves sitting on the ground. Eventually the trunk does appear and lengthen, with somewhat attractive leaf scar rings forming on the trunk surface as the lower leaves drop.
Genus name comes from the native name in Madagascar.
Medium-sized evergreen tree, up to 20(–30) m tall; roots rhizomatous; trunk solitary or branched at base, cylindrical, woody, ring-scarred, olive green and smooth or grey and fissured, apical third clothed by leaf bases; crown fan-like, with 20 or more leaves. Leaves alternate, distichously arranged, simple; petiole 3–6 m long, stout, channelled, with air canals, arising at 45° to axis, base cup-shaped, broadly sheathing and overlapping; blade oblong, 2.5–4(–5) m × 0.8–1.5 m, base and apex rounded, entire but often torn at the veins, glabrous, dull green, midrib sulcate, pale, with closely set, parallel veins. Inflorescence an axillary thyrse, bearing cincinnate flower clusters enclosed in distichously arranged, large, stiff, boat-shaped bracts 20–25(–30) cm long, whitish. Flowers bisexual, slightly zygomorphic, 3-merous, subtended by carinate bracteoles, all flower parts creamy white; sepals free, lanceolate, subequal, up to 20 cm long, long-acuminate; petals free, lanceolate, up to 15 cm long, posterior one shorter than other 2; nectaries with copious nectar; stamens 6 in 2 whorls of 3, up to 16 cm long, anthers basifixed, dehiscing via longitudinal slits; ovary inferior, 3-locular, style long, straight, stigma with finger-like protuberances. Fruit an oblong, woody, loculicidal capsule 2–4 cm long, many-seeded. Seeds ovoid, ca. 0.5 cm long, glabrous, brown, with abundant endosperm, surrounded by a blue to purple, laciniate-lobed aril. Seedling with hypogeal germination, cotyledon single, massive, tip remaining in the seed-coat as an absorbing organ.
Maximum Height : 9 m to 18 m Min.
Temperature: 50 °F (10°C)
Zone: 10 to 11
Water Requirements: Moderate water
Sun Requirements: Full sun to light shade
Care About palm::
Minimal temperature : 50°F (10°C)
Soil: Chalk, Clay, Loam, Peat, Sand, Silt
No serious insect or disease problems. Leaves may be shredded by strong wind. Leaf spot can be significant. Root rot. Spider mites.
Ravenala madagascariensis - Traveller's palm - Plant - 15 cm(6") - Live starter
- Brands VIRIAR
- Product Code: SM
- Availability: In Stock