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Blue Latan Palm
Blue Latan Palms are striking tropical fan palms with a distinctive mottled blue-gray color in the leaf stems and veins when young. As they age this feature becomes less distinguished and identification is aided by the distinctive convoluted surface ornamentation of the broader end of their seeds. Latan Palms are adapted to the seasonally dry tropical climate of their native Mauritius Island where they prosper in the hot wet summers. In the wild they grow close to the shore on cliffs and in canyons where they do not receive the direct salt spray from the ocean. The Latans below where photographed growing in the Mounts Botanical Center in West Palm Beach. Of the tribe Borasseae, and subfamily Coryphoideae it is also known by the botanic name Latania loddigesii.
Common Name: Blue Latan Palm
Botanical Name: Latania loddigesii
Plant Type: Solitary Palm Tree
Origin: Mauritius Island
Zones: 10 - 11
Rate of Growth: Slow
Salt Tolerance: Moderate
Soil Requirements: Widely adaptable
Water Requirements: High drought tolerance
Nutritional Requirements: Moderate
Light Requirements: High
Form: Solitary fan palm, canopy of 1-2 dozen leaves
Leaves: Costapalmate, stiffly folded, divided to 1/2 into about 30 stiff, unsplit segments with finely toothed margins becoming smooth with age. Color: Blue-green, waxy, wooly below; red veins when very young.
Inflorescence: 3-6' long, from among leaves
Pests or diseases: Palmetto weevils
Uses: Specimen plant
Bad Habits: Slightly susceptible to lethal yellowing
Cost: $$ - $$$ -- reasonable to expensive
Propagation: Fresh seed, germinates in 1-2 months
Sources: A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants, Betrock's Guide to Landscape Palms
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Last updated 06/03/08