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Phenakospermum guyannense

South American Travellers Palm

Not many people know about the existence of this forgotten South American cousin of the Madagascan Travellers Palm, Ravenala madagascariensis. At home in northern South America, it makes a desirable and very fast growing ornamental for tropical and warm subtropical areas; and is also an excellent potted plant when young, due to its unusual shape. Its leaves are arranged in a single plane in a fan-like manner and at maturity it produces huge, upright, Heliconia-like inflorescences. Phenakospermum is still virtually unknown in cultivation.

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germination comments by our visitors
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Seeds from this species ...

...easy to germinate and need up to 3 months to sprout.
i had 4 seeds, from Suriname, which i kept warm, 22-27 Celcius, in moist rockwool, 3 germinated in 5 weeks 4 days, 1 blank, 1 died after 2 weeks, now 1 year on, they both grow good and fast, 7 leaves on 1 and 5 on the other. Make sure you give them a rich, clay based, cocoshust, peat,sharpsand or hardfoam chips, soil, they are heavy feeders, ORGANIC, with chemical feed you kill them, turn yellow and die. for the rest, easy to grow and they dont need a rainforest to trive but give them enough shade and water.
Submitted on 24/12/2002 by dosnl dosnl1@yahoo.com

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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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