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Biosphere, Fauna and Flora in Cuba Naturaleza
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Cuban Royal Palm (Roystonea regia), national tree of Cuba

Cuban Royal Palm (Roystonea regia)
Scientific name: Roystonea regia
Common name (english): Cuban Royal Palm
Common name (spanish): Palma Real

The Cuban Royal Palm (Roystonea regia) is the national tree of Cuba. Is a majestic plant that grows from 50 to 70 freet tall with a canopy spread of up to 25 feet in diameter.

The Cuban Royal Palm does best in a sunny location with well drained soil that is slightly acidic. Unlike some other palms, the Royal Palm tree will grow rapidly if it is well watered and fertilized.

Flowers develop from buds formed on the trunk below the leaves. The male flowers have three minute, broad sepals, three bluntpointed petals measuring 6.4 mm long, six to nine stamens with purple anthers, and a rudimentary pistil (Little and others.

The smaller female flowers have three small, broad sepals and a tubular corolla. They also bear six sterile stamens and a pistil with three styles.

The violet-purple fruits are smooth, ovate, and measure 13 mm in length. Each fruit bears a single light brown, thin seed embedded in brown fibrous flesh.

The stout, smooth trunk is not always straight, and many short air roots are attached at the base. The upper trunk is encased in a green column of leaf sheaths 1 to 3 m long.

The pinnate leaves have short petioles and a sheath and blade 2.4 to 3.7 m long. Pinnae grow in several planes along the rachis of each R. regia leaf, while in R. borinquena O.F. Cook, pinnae grow from the rachis in two planes.

The Royal palm is probably the most beautiful palm in the world. It is fast growing and although tropical, the royal palm can survive in sub - tropical areas. Unlike some other palms, the Royal Palm tree will grow rapidly if it is well watered and fertilized.

 
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© 2014 Nigel Hunt