African Palmyra Palm
Easily the most impressive of the Palmyra palms and one of the most amazing of all fan palms, B. aethiopum grows a massive, smooth trunk to over 30 m (100 ft.) tall and swollen in the middle, topped by a large crown of enormous, grayish green leaves. The seeds are the size of small coconuts, three to a fibrous fruit, which is apparently popular with elephants. When germinated, the seed quickly produces a long taproot (technically the cotyledonary stalk) to anchor the base of the plant deep in the ground. If they cannot be planted in their permanent position, very tall pots are required. Young plants are slow growing but highly attractive, with black leafbases and coarse, black thorns along the margins of the leafstalk. Although a typical palm of the dry African savanna, where it is sometimes found in large stands, it is highly adaptable and will succeed beautifully even in the wet tropics. A superb palm for any tropical garden that can afford the space the palm requires to develop.