Beccariophoenix sp. (High Plateaux)

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This is a new introduction from the highlands of Madagascar.  Do you know any or do you cultivate this palm?

How cold/frost hardy is it?

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Alberto,

     I have a few plants, but only a couple of years now. This species has'nt been around that long, so I am still waiting to see what low temp.'s they can take here in South Florida.

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Exactly how many potential new Beccariophoenix species are we talking about now? Do you have pictures of yours, Jeff?

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Hi Alberto..i have one from Frederico Oste and this will be his first winter in my hands, but Frederico has them for some years and he told me that he is surprised how cold hardy they are.  If you need his E-mail addr send me a PM....toto

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Wow, soon there'll be more species of Beccario than Dypsis..LOL!

Daryl

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Is this one a different palm than the "no windows" Beccariophoenix that has been around for a few years now?

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The High Plateau Beccariophoenix is certainly distinct from B. madagascariensis and will soon be described as a new species. The manuscript and illustrations are ready and all we have to wait for is for the article to make its way through the press. It's a spectacular palm in the wild. The story of its discovery is included in the article

John

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Hello John. It's great to have you here. When and where can we expect the article?? Thank you in advance.

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Bo,

    My few plants came from Pete Balasky, and I'm not quite sure how he obtained the seeds. Maybe from Alfred. We saw a slide show about 2 years ago from John Dransfield while he was in Miami. These plants look similar in looks to B. mad. "coastal form". I guess we will have to wait for the new book. ???

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Here are photos of my individual Becarriophoenix sp. 'High Plateau'. I also have a few of the B. sp. 'Coastal Form' a.k.a. 'No Windows', and they look simular, but are definitely different plants. This species has a silver hue to the leaflets, the leaf bases get a dark tan color to them as they reach the fiber. The leaflets have a light medial ridge, and they are quite stiff. Two other physiological differences include an ability to grow in full sun at a young age, and a much faster rate of growth that B. sp. 'Coastal Form'. The one pictured is from Pete Balasky, and is getting larger in a hurry, in a 20 gallon pot.

2006-11-10_15-08-06.jpg

2006-11-10_15-08-42.jpg

Ryan

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(toto @ Nov. 10 2006,02:52)

QUOTE
Hi Alberto..i have one from Frederico Oste and this will be his first winter in my hands, but Frederico has them for some years and he told me that he is surprised how cold hardy they are.  If you need his E-mail addr send me a PM....toto

Yes,I remember Federico telling that some years ago ,an italian group collected seeds of frost hardy palm species from higher provenance,including this one. I really hope this beauty can grow here!.... :)

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Germinated seeds currently available from Ortanique as "Beccariophoenix sp. New" - any ideas which one this might be?

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The new Beccariophoenix is probably sceduled for PALMS 51(2) that will apear in June. It is scarcely mentioned in the new Field Guide as we had to draw a line somewhere. I think vegetatively it really is rather similar to the southern population of B. madagascariensis from the Fort Dauphin area but the inflorescences and fruit are very different - and as I said yesterday, the genetic evidence is pretty compelling that it is diistinct.

John

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Ryan:

Your specimen looks a LOT like a juvie Jube.

dave

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Hello Mr.Dransfield!

Where do this palm grow in Madagascar? Which region and altitude? Thanks!

  Alberto

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Ryan: Your specimen looks a LOT like a juvie Jube. dave

It's amazing how palms can look alike when they are young. Too bad a Jubaea would never live to be this size here, let alone reach this size in 2 years.

Ryan

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The new Beccariophoenix grows west of Antsirabe on the High PLateau at an elevation of 1050 m above sea level where the rainfall is 1500 mm a year and the average temp 15–20 ºC. The dry season is about 5 months long.

My bet is that this species will prove to be the hardiest of all the Beccariophoenix in cultivation.

John

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My bet is that this species will prove to be the hardiest of all the Beccariophoenix in cultivation.

John

From my experience it has definetly proven itself as a great container palm. Since I only have the one plant, I am unable to experiment with it as much as I would want to. I have tested it for drought however, 10 days without rain or irrigation with no signs of damage, in full sun. If it doesn't have a negative reaction to our soils here, it ought to grow fantastically in the ground.

Ryan

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Interesting info. I can't wait to read the story when that one comes out in the Journal.

Zac

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madagasc.jpg                                                                           I contacted Mr Toby Spanner and he said his seeds were collected 6 weeks ago at an altitude of abt. 2000m.

 I really hope so ,because 1050m at the latitude of Antsirabe ,if I compare with Brazil,must have a fairly warm climate without ´´real´´ freezes,I think!

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Hi Alberto...the info i had was 1300-1400m, the town Antsirabe is on 1523m. The all time low (Tmin) for that place is -8C, and each year there are few frosts.  toto

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OK this is all interesting but can someone clarify my understanding of this situation....

There are three different plants in cultivation now correct?

(1) the standard B madagascariensis 'windows'

(2) the 'no windows' (which may or may not be B madagascariensis) form that has been available for several years now,

and

(3) the B 'species new' or B 'high plateau'  which has only been available very recently, which also has "no windows" but is different from the plant sold for the last few years as B 'no windows'.

Is this right?

Matt

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Matt,

     This is correct for now, I think. There is a new field guide book on Palms of Madagascar that is almost ready and according to John, will be ready later this month or early December. Read the thread, New Books, that he just posted the other day. This will answer alot of questions.

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(toto @ Nov. 13 2006,14:03)

QUOTE
Hi Alberto...the info i had was 1300-1400m, the town Antsirabe is on 1523m. The all time low (Tmin) for that place is -8C, and each year there are few frosts.  toto

Thanks Toto! that is great news!!!! :)

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For Matt

Yes, there appear to be 3 forms.

1. True B. madagascariensis has few and very inconspicuous windows.

2. Big windowed form - we still don't yet know whether this is a distinct species or not - certainly looks it as a juvenile. We are woorking on it.

3. High altitude new species that will be described in June PALMS

so, it's not quite as you summarized it.

John

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John,

I find your answer intriguing. You say that #1), the true B. madagascariensis has few and very inconspicuous windows. The photo on page 440 in POM shows a young B. madagascariensis with windows that I would consider quite conspicuous. This is also the plant that I think all of us think of as "THE" B. madagascariensis.

When you say that the true B. madagascariensis has inconspicuous windows, does that mean that the palm on page 440 is in fact #2? If not, I'm not quite sure what to make of this, unless #2 has windows that are REALLY amazing!! But I've never heard of this...

Hopefully you can clarify!

Thanks,

Bo-Göran

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Bo,

Thanks for your question. I was trying to figure out how to ask the same thing, without confusing a confusing subject even more.  :)

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I am still confused...

¿Is the non-window form (that has been avaiable in the past few years) the same of "Southern Form" or "Coastal Form"?

So: is the following statement correct?

True B.madagascariensis = Non-window of the past few years = South Form = Coastal Form?

All from one population?

And.. are the three forms recognized by John each from just one population?

Carlo, Tenerife

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OK - sorry for the confusion. When POM went to press 11 years ago, the only Beccariophoenix seedlings that we knew in cultivation were the big window form which we assumed to be Beccariophoenix madagascariensis. We now know that seeds collected from near the original locality from which the species was described way back last century produce seedlings with few narrow windows. This is true the true B.madagascariensis. The same palm also occurs near Fort Dauphin at sea level in coastal forest. It is very similar as an adult and produces similar seedlings with few narrow windows. We are calling this southern population B. madagascariensis too. The broad windowed form (as illustrated in POM)  seems to come from an area known as Ranomafana Est, not far from the original locality at Perinet but, instead of being at 1000m, Ranomafana Est is in the lowlands at about 150 m elevation. Until recently we knew of only one palm of this form but my student has located another very small population (with seedlings clearly showing the broad windowed form.).

It is possible that this lowland population is a distinct species. As I mentioned earlier, we are working on it. At the moment it seems to me that the population down at Fort Dauphin which really is at sea level but at the extreme south of the island is the same as that at the type locality at Perinet at 1000 m.

What is most amazing is that yet more populations of Beccariophoenix are being discovered. I am of course hoping that more material of the big windowed form will be discovered so we can assess properly whether it should be regarded as a separate species.

I hope this clears up the confusion

John

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Oh, and I forgot to add that the third highland species, the primary subject of this thread, is definitely a distinct speceis and will be published in June. So we have three forms in the genus

John

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I'm just trying to get a handle on this then. There is the form with few narrow windows from the south which is the real madagascariensis, there is the second from further north which has larger windows and there is the plateau form. What is the one that never gets windows at all but goes from having young entire monofid/bifid leaves to pinnate leaves skipping the window stage altogether. I have a few of this one and I'm sure many others do too. I bought this one as a southern form madagscariensis. They have that coconut look much earlier than the window forms.

regards

Tyrone

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Thanks for the clarification John. It sounds like there are still a ton of new species to be described from Madagascar.

Zac

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.................Yes I´m growing this palm now!

  I planted the seeds direct in the pots on 21 dec 2006 and here are two of the 11 seedlings:

  (Show yours!)

post-465-1175561617_thumb.jpg

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Those look different from the seedlings Ortanique was selling as Beccariophoenix sp. New

Why are the eophylls so broad I wonder?...

My "High Plateaus" are sprouting well in a dry perlite/vermiculite mixture

becc high plateau.jpg

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Hi Toto,

How were the eophyls on your seedling?

If I see it right,they remain on your seedling....

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Hi All,

From the photographs, it sure looks like a young Parajubaea, fiber and all. I'm wondering if this might not be a canidate to grow in the San Francisco Bay area? From it's altitude, sounds like it likes cool. Does anyone have one that has taken near or below freezing?

Dick

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Hi Alberto ...the eophyls were cut off when I recived the palm, but i remember from Fredericos place few years ago that they have been entire just like yours....toto

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Toto,have it seen some frost this last winter?

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