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Caryota ophiopellis

Snakeskin Fishtail Palm

This beautiful, rare Fishtail Palm was discovered only a few years ago on the tiny island of Tanna in the Vanuatu Archipelago in the South Pacific between Fiji and New Caledonia. Its most striking feature is the robust leafstalks, distinctly striped or mottled black and white in a zebra or "snakeskin" fashion. The moderately sized palm is a good grower for warm subtropical and tropical climates. We only have a small number of seeds available, so hurry while supplies last.

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germination comments by our visitors
For general germination instructions click here.

Also see plant cultivation comments below.

Seeds from this species ...

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 3 months to sprout.
I recieved my seeds from rarepalmseeds.com the first week in April 06. I soaked them in warm boiled water for 3 days, placed in the airing cup-board, I then placed them in a ziplock bag with a mixture of peat and pearlite and left once again in the airing cup-board until the weather outside got warmer(approx end of May). They were transfered to individual pots of just peat, the seeds placed flat side down and lightly covered so you could see the shiny top of the seed, watered with warm pond water and placed in an unheated propagator. The seeds were then placed on the top shelf in my shed(I think I have a magic shed all my seeds seem to germinate in there) no extra heating was supplied, temperatures fluctuated between 45F at night up to 103F daytime between June and July. If the pots felt light they were watered with pond water and misted if felt weighty but the tops looked a bit dry. They were taken down and inspected on 30th July and all but one has the top of a thick tap root showing, they are now out of the shed to supply more light.
Submitted on 02/08/2006 by Susan Johnston susansmessagemail@msn.com

... are easy to germinate and need up to 3 months to sprout.
Used sphagnum technique, majority of seeds sprouted after 2 months...
Submitted on 19/12/2005 by poppy poppy_wise@yahoo.com.au

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
Also see germination commnets above.

Plants from this species ...

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If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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Other selected books are available in our Book Shop
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