Arenga micrantha

Arenga micrantha

Arenga micrantha or Tibetan Sugar Palm is a recently rediscovered palm.

Growth seems to be fast. Its hardiness is not very well documented and it is advised to keep the plant in pot and frost free the first couple of years.

In its habitat, it is used to extreme temperature variations over a short period: very warm during the day and very cold at night. But it doesn’t seem to resist long periods of frost.

Description:

Arenga micrantha grows as solitary up to 6 m height. The trunk is up to 2 m high and 15 cm in diameter.

The leaves are up to 3 m long with a triangular leaflet at the end. The leaflets are linear, 35 along each side of the rachis, silver-gray at the bottom.

The inflorescence is solitary, up to 1 m in length with about a 100 flowering branches. It blooms only once and then dies. There is nothing known about fruit.

Nomenclature:

Common name:

Tibetan Sugar Palm

Etymology:

Arenga: from the Moluk name areng
Micrantha: from the Greek micranthus (small flowered)

Origin:

Eastern Himalayan foothills (Tibet, Bhutan, India)

Habitat:

Subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, between 1400 and 2150 m altitude

Hardiness:

USDA zone 9-11, -6,5 °C
This palm has only recently been rediscovered and cultivated and hardiness is not well documented yet.



Care:

Soil:

Nutritious and well drained

Exposure:

Sun, place in full sun, necrosis might occur in the shade

Water:

Water regularly during summer

Feed:

Weekly with universal liquid fertilizer during summer, monthly during winter

Propagation:

Seed

Sowing instructions:

  • soak in tepid water (25 °C) for 48 hours
  • sow in light soil mix
  • moisten
  • keep at 25 °C
  • germination time: 2 to 4 weeks
  • repot when seedlings are easy to handle

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