04 December, 2009

The Exotic Renda

LS view of the feather-leaved Sealing Wax Palm ( Cyrtostachys renda) synonym - Cyrtostachys lakka grown at my farm.

This outstanding red palm is a real favourite of mine. It is always locally known in Sarawak as "Pinang Lakka" and being native grows throughout Sarawak, Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra island especially along coastal regions in sandy and swampy soil conditions. However because of its ornamental appeal it has been grown at urban locations where soils are different from its original habitat . But it doesn't bother the lakka thus dislaying its perfect adaptability. It has been used as instant decoration for arches during sports day, weddings and also in welcoming returning pilgrims from Mecca. Grown in big pots it can be shifted anywhere within a corporate building or any open landscaping spaces, e.g. sidewalks, airport lobbies, etc. It is the most exotic among the palms in Sarawak basically because of its brilliant scarlet and sometimes deep orange and smooth crown shafts. In my farm I have kept both varieties of the blood- red and deep orange- coloured leaf bases.
I have been planting dozens of this palm at my farm for beautification purposes as well as for an on site nursery for obtaining seeds for germination. Recently I checked on the propagation box. Surprise it was. I was able to see some seeds germinating after been placed inside the box a year before (26/11/08). Indeed it is not easy to get young seedlings from the seeds and the time it takes to germinate does not make impatient people happy to search for them. The rate of germination is less than 50%. Thus there is another way to obtain young trees the instant way. From the adventurous stolons new trees can be separated from the mother plant but the amount one can get is limited. Therefore to obtain large quantities, propagation by seeds is still preferred though restrained by time.
With the help of a " parang" ( matchet) the underground stolons that connect the young tree to its mother plant is cut and an instant plantlet is obtained.

As the tag says, the date of sowing the seeds was 26/11/08, that's a year ago.
Notice the straight eophyll ( first leaves) at the upper left of the box barely an inch long.


More seeds are available for this year's propagation from this single stem.

A view of Sarawak Museum building in Kuching showing the C. renda planted at the entrance. The trees must have been planted for more than 20 years to achieve the height above.






2 comments:

  1. Amazing pot as always, I never knew you could cultivate palm trees this way. Love the red trunk.;) Have a great weekend.;)
    xo
    Zuzana

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Zuzana.You too.Hav a splendid weekend :)

    ReplyDelete

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