This section is from the book "The Standard Cyclopedia Of Horticulture Vol2", by L. H. Bailey. See also: Western Garden Book: More than 8,000 Plants - The Right Plants for Your Climate - Tips from Western Garden Experts.
(Greek for dwarf bush). Palmaceae tribe Sabaleae. Low fan-leaved palms.
Caudices cespitose, branched from the base and clothed with the bases of the If . - sheaths: leaves terminal, rigid, semi-orbicular or cuneate-flabellate, deeply laciniate, the lobes narrow, bifid, plicate; no rachis; ligule very short; petiole slender, bi-convex, the margins smooth or rough; sheath split, reticulate, fibrous: spadices short, erect compressed; branches short, densely fid.: spathes 2-4, broad, thickly coriaceous, the lower ones split, the upper entire; bracts small, subulate; bractlets none: primary spadix branches bracted: flowers small, yellow: fruit globose or ovoid, 3-sided toward the base, brown or yellow. - Species 1 or perhaps 2. Medit. region. From Rhapidophyllum, an American relative, it may be distinguished by its bracted spadix. The common C. humilis is widely cultivation, and very variable. Many of specific-made names represent forms of this species. Of such cases are evidently the garden names C. arborescens, C. argentea, C. canariensis, C. elata, C. elegans, C. farinosa, C. gracilis, C. littoralis, C. nivea.
The best soil for these palms is fibrous loam two parts, leaf-mold and sand one part, with good drainage. Propagated by suckers and by seeds. These are among the hardiest of all palms, and are well suited to greenhouses where a high temperature is not kept up. (G. W. Oliver.)
Linn. Fig. 896. This is the only palm native to Eu. stem 1-1 1/2 ft. high: leaves ragged, fibrous; margins of the petioles armed with stout, straight or hooked spines; blade suboibicular, truncate or cuneate at the base, rigid, palmately multifid; segments acuminate, bifid. Medit. B.M. 2152. R.H. 1892:84 (showing habit and a colored plate of the fruit). - Reaches 20 ft. in a rather arborescent variety. variety dactylocarpa,
Fig. 896. Chamaerops humilis.
Becc, is interesting for its elongated fruits shaped like a date. Offered by Montarioso Nursery in 1912.
C. Biroo, Sieb.= Livistona rotundifolia. - C. Byrrho, Hort.= Livistona rotundifolia. - C. excelsa, Thunb.=Trachycarpusexcelsus. -C. farinosa, Hort.=C. humilis, Linn. - C. Fortunei, Hook.= Trachycarpus. - C. humilis X hystrix, Hort. Said to be a "choice garden hybrid of Florida origin."-C. hystrix, Fraser.=Rhapido-phy llum hystrix. - -C. stauracantha, Hort.=Acanthorhiza aculeata.
Jared G. Smith.