Syagrus romanzoffiana, the queen palm or cocos palm, is a palm native to South America, launched all through the world as a preferred decorative backyard tree. S. romanzoffiana is a medium-sized palm, rapidly reaching maturity at a top of as much as 15 m (49 ft) tall, with pinnate leaves having as many as 494 pinnae (leaflets), though extra usually round 300, every pinna being round 50 centimetres (18 in) in size and three–5 centimetres (1–2 in) in width.
Named after Nikolay Rumyantsev (1754–1826), who was Russia’s International Minister and Imperial Chancellor and notable patron of the Russian voyages of exploration. He sponsored the primary Russian circumnavigation of the globe.
Because of the nomenclature confusion, they usually retain a earlier identify in common utilization.
This palm was first scientifically described and validly printed as Cocos romanzoffiana in 1822 in Paris in a folio of illustrations made by the artist Louis Choris, with an outline by the French-German poet and botanist Adelbert von Chamisso. Each males had participated within the first Russian scientific expedition around the globe underneath command of Otto von Kotzebue, and funded by Nikolay Rumyantsev, throughout which they collected this plant within the hinterland of Santa Catarina, Brazil in late 1815.
In the meantime, in England, someday round 1825 Loddiges nursery had imported seed of a palm from Brazil which they dubbed Cocos plumosa of their catalogue, a nomen nudum. The horticulturist John Claudius Loudon in 1830 listed this plant amongst Three species of the Cocos genus then grown in Britain, and talked about its doable identification as Karl von Martius’ C. comosa. One among Loddiges’ seedlings had ultimately discovered its method to the brand new palm range constructed at Kew Gardens within the 1840s, the place it had grown to a top of 50–60 ft, and the place botanists had been decided it to be one other of von Martius’ species; C. coronata. In 1859 this palm flowered and produced fruit for the primary time, which made it clear that its earlier identification was incorrect and thus the director of the backyard, Joseph Dalton Hooker, ‘reluctantly’ printed a sound description for Loddiges’ identify C. plumosa in 1860.C. plumosa turned a preferred decorative plant around the globe, and crops continued to be offered underneath this identify as of 2000.
From 1887 onwards Odoardo Beccari printed a evaluation of the genus Cocos. Beneath subgenus Arecastrum he listed the taxa C. romanzoffiana of Santa Catarina, C. plumosa identified solely from cultivation from seedlings from the plant in Kew, C. australis of Argentina to Paraguay, C. datil of japanese Argentina and Uruguay, C. acrocomioides of Mato Grosso do Sul, C. acaulis of Piauí, Goiás and just lately collected from the mountains of Paraguay bordering Brazil, and C. geriba (syn. C. martiana) referred to as a variable species cultivated in gardens all through Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul, Minas Gerais, Paraná, Rio de Janeiro) and the Mediterranean area. Beccari famous that lots of the palms being supplied within the catalogues underneath numerous species names have been really C. geriba.
In 1912 Alwin Berger lowered the taxon C. plumosa, hitherto nonetheless solely identified from hundreds in cultivation around the globe but not identified from the wild, to quite a lot of C. romanzoffiana, as C. romanzoffiana var. plumosa.
It was first moved from the genus Cocos in 1891 by Otto Kuntze in his Revisio Generum Plantarum, which was broadly ignored, however in 1916 Beccari raised Arecastrum to a monotypic genus and synonymised all species within the former subgenus to A. romanzoffianum. By this time South American imports of palm seed have been being offered throughout Europe underneath a plethora of names, in response to Beccari usually mislabelled however inconceivable to find out all the way down to ‘right’ geographical species, thus he interpreted the taxa to belong to a single extraordinarily variable species. This interpretation was lengthy adopted. Beccari additionally thought-about C. botryophora a part of this species, an interpretation that’s now partially rejected. Beccari recognised the next, now rejected, varieties:
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. australe – from C. australis, C. datil
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. botryophora – from C. botryophora. As this taxon Beccari (mis)recognized crops rising in Rio de Janeiro he earlier thought-about C. geriba. Synonymy later rejected.
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. ensifolium – from C. botryophora var. ensifolium of Bahia.
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. genuinum – nominate type. Contains C. romanzoffiana, C. plumosa, C. geriba, C. martiana.
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. genuinum subvar. minus – from a dwarf particular person plant of unsure origins in cultivation in a personal assortment in Hyères, France.
- Arecastrum romanzoffianum var. micropindo – from a inhabitants of dwarf crops from Paraguay earlier misidentified as C. acaulis.
Beccari additionally reinstated Martius’ Syagrus.
Arecastrum was subsumed underneath Syagrus in 1968.
A genetics research by Bee F. Gunn discovered that S. romanzoffiana didn’t group with the opposite two Syagrus species examined, however with Lytocaryum weddellianum.
It happens from japanese and central Paraguay and northern Argentina north to japanese and southern Brazil and northern Uruguay. It’s fairly widespread in its native vary.
In Brazil it happens within the states of Bahia, Distrito Federal, Goiás, Mato Grosso do Sul, Espírito Santo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Paraná, Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. In Argentina it happens within the provinces of Buenos Aires, Chaco, Corrientes, Entre Ríos, Formosa, Mendoza, Misiones (El Dorado, Guaraní, Iguazú), Santa Fe, San Juan and San Luis. In Uruguay it happens within the departments of Maldonado, Montevideo, Rivera, Rocha, Salto, Tacuarembó and Treinta y Tres. In Paraguay it happens within the departments of Alto Paraná, Amambay, Caaguazú, Canindeyú, Central, Concepción, Cordillera, Guairá, Ñeembucú, Paraguarí and San Pedro.
The queen palm is reportedly naturalized to some extent in Florida,Queensland,Honduras, and the island of Mauritius.
On Mauritius seedlings have been recorded from gardens within the now extremely residential space ‘Montagne Ory’ close to the village of Moka from 1981-1984 to no less than 1999.
The federal government of the Australian state of Queensland considers it a possible ‘invasive plant’, and discourages home-owners from planting it, however it’s not prohibited or restricted, or a declared weed. In keeping with the 1989 Flora of Southeastern Queensland it’s naturalised in southern Queensland and the Atherton Tableland.
It isn’t considered an invasive or naturalised in New South Wales, though quite a few sightings of it have been recorded round Sydney and the coast, together with in nature parks. It has been labeled as a noxious weed by one native council in New South Wales since no less than 2010, as of 2015 it’s not prohibited or restricted within the state, however labeled as a ‘severe risk … not broadly distributed within the space’ in a single native area. It was presumably first recognized as a possible environmental weed for the world in a guide from 1998. Sale is discouraged and the palms are being eliminated.
It’s broadly planted all through a lot of Florida and different components of the southern United States, though it’s not but broadly established within the flora as of 2000. It’s labeled as a class II invasive species.
It’s a widespread tree in lots of habitats.
Birds recorded to eat the fruit pulp from fallen fruit embody the rufous-bellied thrush (Turdus rufiventris), the bananaquit (Coereba flaveola), violaceous euphonia (Euphonia violacea), Brazilian tanager (Ramphocelus bresilius) and tropical parula (Parula pitiayumi). Azure jays (Cyanocorax caeruleus) feed on the fruit pulp each picked straight from the infructescence in addition to from fallen fruit mendacity on the bottom, normally swallowing the fruits entire or transporting them away from the tree. The 2 toucans Ramphastos vitellinus and R. dicolorus pluck ripe fruits straight from the infructescence and regurgitate the seeds, the gamefowl chachalaca Ortalis guttata (or a carefully associated species, relying on one’s taxonomic interpretation) and the 2 associated guan Penelope obscura and P. superciliaris, did in order effectively, however unfold the seeds of their defecations and thus could also be necessary dispersers.
The squirrel Guerlinguetus brasiliensis ssp. ingrami is a vital seed predator of this palm the place the ranges of the 2 species overlap; breaking the nut open with its tooth at one of many three pores within the prime of the nutshell. It preferentially targets bug-infested nuts. A long run research into feeding behaviour of this squirrel in a secondary Araucaria forest discovered that though in sure seasons different crops have been consumed in bigger portions, the palm nuts have been eaten in massive portions all through your entire 12 months and have been thus a very powerful meals merchandise.
Different necessary seed predators are seed-boring weevils and palm bruchid beetles of the genus Pachymerus. Grubs of P. bactris, P. cardo and P. nucleorum have all been discovered inside the seed of this species (amongst many different species of associated South American palms).
The massive, vibrant weevil Revena rubiginosa seems to be the primary seed predator in quite a few areas. It’s thought to in all probability be a specialist seed predator of this palm. It infests the growing seeds earlier than the fruits are ripe, whereas they’re nonetheless connected to the infructescence, the grubs exiting the seed to pupate underground across the palm when the fruit fall. Different weevils discovered to be using related methods with this palm are Anchylorhynchus aegrotus and A. variabilis.
The fruit are eaten by tapirs, which is likely to be necessary seed dispersers, and a few wild canids such because the pampas fox and the crab-eating fox.
Three research in Brazil, in 4 areas missing different massive frugivores equivalent to squirrels, peccaries, deer and tapirs, discovered coati (Nasua nasua) to be necessary seed dispersers in such areas. The coati climb into the palm to get on the fruit, which in a single city research was present in 10% of all stool samples, though it constituted solely 2.5% of the overall faecal matter. Different necessary dispersing mammals have been agoutis (Dasyprocta azarae), which generally cache seeds. Black-eared opossum (Didelphis aurita) and a russet rice rat (Euryoryzomys russatus) have been additionally discovered among the many fallen fruits.
The leaves of this palm are consumed by the caterpillars of the butterflies Blepolenis batea in Uruguay in 1974, Brassolis astyra ssp. astyra, B. sophorae and Catoblepia amphirhoe in Santa Catarina in 1968, whereas Opsiphanes invirae, the nominate type or presumably subspecies remoliatus, was recorded feeding on this palm in each these areas. O. quiteria was additionally recorded feeding on the leaves in Argentina in 1969.
Larvae of the large day-flying moth Paysandisia archon are identified to assault the piths of this palm species, together with many different species, no less than in Europe, the place neither the moth nor palm are native. It will possibly kill the palm. It prefers different genera of palm with extra furry trunks like Trachycarpus, Trithrinax or Chamaerops.
The caterpillars of the Indonesian butterfly Cephrenes augiades ssp. augiades and the Australian C. trichopepla might also feed on the leaves this palm.
The bases of the pruned fronds stay on the tree for a number of months might function a habitat for bugs or snails.
Cultivation and makes use of
The queen palm is planted in lots of tropical and subtropical areas. It is extremely common as a decorative tree and far utilized in city landscaping. It’s fairly hardy, to -5 °C, however the useless fronds have to be pruned to maintain the tree visually pleasing. In some areas the fallen fruit are identified for attracting unwelcome bugs.
The palm is commonly lower down in Brazil to make use of the leaves and inflorescences to supply animal (cattle) fodder, particularly in occasions of drought. The leaves are equally utilized in Argentina. Its fruits are edible and generally eaten; consisting of a tough nut surrounded with a skinny layer of fibrous flesh that’s orange and sticky when ripe. The flavour is good and could possibly be described as a combination of plum and banana.
In keeping with Blombery & Rodd  folks eat the unexpanded leaves of apical buds in some areas. Fallen fruits are fed to pigs, and palm trunks are sometimes utilized in development, often hollowed out to make water pipes or aqueducts for irrigation.
In 1920s Argentina it was cultivated as a crop. The younger buds are consumed as greens, pickled or preserved in oil. The trunk of the palm supplies sago.
Syagrus Romanzoffiana rising in Central Florida.
Outdated Queen Palm in Punta Gorda Florida.
Queen palm displaying sunburned fronds, a typical concern with them in Scorching Desert Climates. Phoenix Arizona.
Fruiting palms may be messy. That is in a metropolis park in São Paulo, Brazil.
Syagrus Romanzoffiana rising in Coastal Georgia USA.
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