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Brahea Axel

The ultimate oddball Sabal Thread

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Brahea Axel

The sabal genus is very interesting, it seems there's a whole bunch of strange sabal, some really not properly classified about which little is known. Some are crosses and varieties, Either way, I thought I'd compile the oddballs all in one thread to learn how to make sense of it all.

I did the best in compiling the info I could find around the internet. Feel free to add info and correct. The only easy ones here are the ones that are different forms of minor - slow, underground trunk, inflorescence that stretches well above the leaves and small seeds. The rest are all some sort of mutts that have either been given their own species label or left to folks to guess around. No one seems to have done any thorough genetic analysis, except for brazoriensis, which someone was obviously curious enough to want to test.

In this list, the most interesting unusual sabal seems to be tamaulipas, which has the unusual property of having a trunk that creeps along the ground. The fact that no one has bothered to give it a species assignment is disappointing. The other interesting result is that sabal birmingham is surely a sabal riverside offspring.

Sabal brazoriensis

Origin: Brazoria County, Texas.

Species: DNA tests verify it's an ancient hybrid between Sabal palmetto and Sabal minor Hardiness: hardiest of the trunked sabal palms, reported to -15F.

Trunk: max 20' tall

Sabal Blountstown

Origin: Blountstown, Florida

Species: minor

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: underground, dwarf maxes out at 18" height, only 1-2 leaves per year

Sabal mccurtain

Origin: growing in McCurtain County, Oklahoma it is one of the most northern growing plants found.

Species: minor

Hardiness: -20F?

Trunk: underground, height to 5', slow, only 1-2 leaves per year

Sabal 'Emerald Island Giant'

Origin: coastal NC near Emerald Isle

Species; minor

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: underground, leaves eventually reach 7 feet in height, only 1-2 leaves per year

Sabal Louisiana

Select swampy areas of Louisiana and east Texas, where it grows among regular Sabal minor.

Species: unknown, possibly a variant of minor,

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: 6' tall trunks, fast

Sabal 'Wakulla Dwarf'

Origin: Near Crawfordville, Florida

Species: minor

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: undeerground, dwarf maxes out at 18" height, slow 1-2 leaves per year

Sabal tamaulipas

Origin: Tamaulipas, Mexico, 1500 feet elevation

Species: unknown, seeds much bigger than minor, and is trunking, much faster than minor

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: 4' long ground creeping, 6' wide costapalmate leaves, total 8' height

Sabal birningham

Origin: Unknown, possibly an offspring of sabal riverside. First identified with a large palmetto that grew in the garden of Eva Alexander in Birmingham, Alabama (hence the name), which survived many freezes below 10 °F (−12 °C), including at least one below 0 °F (−18 °C). One even survived -11 degrees F in Tulsa, OK. Speculation indicates the seed source for this particular palm was somewhere in California.

Species: unknown

Hardiness: -10F

Trunk: same as Riverside

Sabal Etonia

Origin: Florida to Southeast Georgia

Species: it's own species called 'etonia' because inflorescence is shorter than leaves

Hardiness: 10F

trunk; usually underground, but sometimes above ground with up to 6' of trunk

sabal riverside

Origin: Riverside, California

Species: unknown, resembles both causiarum and dominguensis

Hardiness: 5F

Trunk: 30 feet

sabal blackburniana

Origin: hispanolia

Species: it's own species - blackburniana or variant of palmetto or dominguensis

Hardiness: 20F

Trunk: 30 feet

sabal lisa

Origin: Southwest Florida, Fort Meyers

Species: palmetto, mutation or variety, 68% true to seed, the rest revert back to regular palmetto

Hardiness: same as palmetto

Trunk: same as palmetto

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Brahea Axel

Pictures of Sabal tamaulipas:

2dccb8.jpg

9b6da7.jpg

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Brahea Axel

Sabal Birmingham and riverside pictures

Palmetto left versus Birmingham right.

Copy_of_DCP_2775.JPG

Sabal riverside below:

59e7c1.jpg

tn_KW_Sabal_riverside.JPG

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The Steve

Pictures of Sabal tamaulipas:

2dccb8.jpg

9b6da7.jpg

Do you think that there's any relation to S. rosei?

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Brahea Axel

Pictures of Sabal tamaulipas:

2dccb8.jpg

9b6da7.jpg

Do you think that there's any relation to S. rosei?

S. rosei is really very different, the fronds are narrower with a lot less leaflets, and the trunks are really tall. See the pic below I took at the Huntington:

DSCN2563_zps992f3241.jpg

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Zeeth

Sabal miamiensis

Origin: Miami-Dade county, Florida

Species: Possibly S. etonia. Seeds are bigger though, fully ripe they're the size of a cherry.

Hardiness: 10F?

trunk; Subterranean but possibly growing a few feet above ground.

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Eric in Orlando

Sabal "Nuevo Leon, Mexico"

Origin: Nuevo Leon state of Mexico (NE Mexico)

Species: minor? (possibly minor/mexicana hybrid)

Hardiness: 5F?

Trunk: underground,3-4ft , smaller than Sabal "Tamaulipas"

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Ken Johnson

Axel, Any links to important scientific papers on the genus? They species names over the years are fun to see. Henderson's field guide has a huge amount of names listed.

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Mandrew968

Sabal miamiensis

Origin: Miami-Dade county, Florida

Species: Possibly S. etonia. Seeds are bigger though, fully ripe they're the size of a cherry.

Hardiness: 10F?

trunk; Subterranean but possibly growing a few feet above ground.

I am not convinced on this species; I have seen a reputed miamiensis and it is not distinct looking and has a good deal of trunk. Can anyone produce a shot of the cherry sized seed? That needs to be seen to be believed.

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Zeeth

Sabal miamiensis

Origin: Miami-Dade county, Florida

Species: Possibly S. etonia. Seeds are bigger though, fully ripe they're the size of a cherry.

Hardiness: 10F?

trunk; Subterranean but possibly growing a few feet above ground.

I am not convinced on this species; I have seen a reputed miamiensis and it is not distinct looking and has a good deal of trunk. Can anyone produce a shot of the cherry sized seed? That needs to be seen to be believed.

Well I know a lot of people aren't convinced on any of these being their own species, which is what I thought the thread was about. Mine is a few years from having seed so I can't post any seed pics now, and the only fruiting palm that I know of in Florida is at someone's yard who isn't on palmtalk. I don't know enough about etonia to make a distinction, but this is the palm that I saw:

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/showimage/130496/

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Zeeth

There's a very odd Sabal that I've seen a million times in Bradenton but I've never stopped to check it out up close. From the road it almost looks like a Borassus because the leaves are much stiffer and less filamentous than normal Sabals. I've promised myself that next time it seeds I'll collect some to sprout. Here's the google maps as well as some screenshots to show which one I'm talking about. There's a regular S. palmetto growing right next to this palm, so it gives you some idea of how different it is.

https://www.google.com/maps/@27.495234,-82.563912,3a,75y,45.56h,98.41t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sP0p5FVVSFJbN7IBe_DcjEg!2e0

post-3598-0-58613100-1392824568_thumb.jp

post-3598-0-61809500-1392824584_thumb.jp

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Xerarch

Interesting thread

I was not aware that the origin of Sabal brazoriensis had been pinned through DNA, is this recent? There are records of tall Sabals along the central Texas coast which were extirpated long ago due to use for wharves and pilings. I always assumed that these native Sabals were S. Mexicana and that they just ranged farther north than they currently do. But if S. brazoriensis is a hybrid with S. palmetto, maybe it's S. palmetto that once had a much larger range.

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Brahea Axel

Axel, Any links to important scientific papers on the genus? They species names over the years are fun to see. Henderson's field guide has a huge amount of names listed.

I looked up all the "questionable" names that Henderson lists, too bad there is almost no literature on them, nor any internet references either. All you find is all these stupid plant database sites that have zero information but that have copied Henderson's list. If I knew of a way to get rid of these out of all my Google searches, that would be nice.

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Brahea Axel

Here are the results of searching the Palms.org database, lots of interesting data.

An old paper from 1992 has this list for sabals for Mexico:

Current Status of Mexican Palms, by Hermilo J. Quero, Principes 36(4), 1992

http://www.palms.org/principes/1992/vol36n4p203-216.pdf

s. mauritiiformis

s. pumos

s. rosei

s. uresana

s. yapa

s. mexicana

s. greheriae (new species from Quintana Roo)

s. dugessii (based on a cultivated specimen in Rincon de Bustos, Guanajuato, thought to be variant of pumos)

This article describes sabal lisa, it's a fun read: http://www.palms.org/palmsjournal/2005/vol49n1p46-47.pdf

Here's an article on sabal brazoria: http://www.palms.org/palmsjournal/1999/vol43n3p133-135.pdf.

Sadly enough, that's all I managed to find in the database. There has to be more, but it's so hard to search.

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Ken Johnson

Here are the results of searching the Palms.org database, lots of interesting data.

An old paper from 1992 has this list for sabals for Mexico:

Current Status of Mexican Palms, by Hermilo J. Quero, Principes 36(4), 1992

http://www.palms.org/principes/1992/vol36n4p203-216.pdf

s. mauritiiformis

s. pumos

s. rosei

s. uresana

s. yapa

s. mexicana

s. greheriae (new species from Quintana Roo)

s. dugessii (based on a cultivated specimen in Rincon de Bustos, Guanajuato, thought to be variant of pumos)

This article describes sabal lisa, it's a fun read: http://www.palms.org/palmsjournal/2005/vol49n1p46-47.pdf

Here's an article on sabal brazoria: http://www.palms.org/palmsjournal/1999/vol43n3p133-135.pdf.

Sadly enough, that's all I managed to find in the database. There has to be more, but it's so hard to search.

Look at work by Zona, Echman, Baily, who is the guy that did so much early work on Pseudo"s? I remember now, Reed.? he did some sabal work.

I hope that one day soon all the info on PalmTalk can be put into infinite files for searching...soon....soon.

I have a new picture on my phone now of a very weird looking sabal at Naples Botanical Garden labeled roseii. Ill try to upload it directly.

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Eric in Orlando

I have a paper from L.H Bailey, "Gentes Herbarium". It is "Art. 6 Sabal et ceterae, American Palmettoes", published Dec. 1934. It is Bailey's treatment of Sabal at the time. In it the following species are list as valid (at that time) with description;

S. minor

S. mexicana

S. deeringiana

S. etonia

S. palmetto

S. parviflora

S. umbraculifera

S. neglecta

S. domingensis

S. causiarum

S. guatemalensis

S. jamaicensis

S. maurtiaeformis (his spelling)

S. yapa

S. exul

S. bermudana

S. princeps

S. blackburnia

S. uresana

S. texana

S. rosei

S. dugesii

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Mandrew968

From the article Axel posted, there is yet to be definitive proof of brazoriensis being a hybrid. Is there another more current article?

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Eric in Orlando

He also had a list of what he considered non-valid and unplaced names (in 1934);

Sabal adansonii var. major

S. australis

S. carat

S. carolinianum

S. caerulescens

S. columnaris

S. dealbata

S. denisonii

S. elata

S. extonianum

S. floribunda

S. ghiesebrechti

S. gigantea

S. graminifolia

S. histrix

S. longifolia

S. macrophylla

S. magdalenae

S. maritima

S. mocini

S. mucini

S. oleracea

S. picta

S. pumos

S. sanfordi

S. taurina

S. woodfordii

S. woodfordiana

Inodes vestita

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Mandrew968

Do you think Jeff Marcus has a Sabal floribunda? :mrlooney:

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Eric in Orlando

Do you think Jeff Marcus has a Sabal floribunda? :mrlooney:

A whole grove !

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Mandrew968

From the article Axel posted, there is yet to be definitive proof of brazoriensis being a hybrid. Is there another more current article?

This one is from 2011 on Sabal x brazoriensis

http://www.mapress.com/phytotaxa/content/2011/f/pt00027p025.pdf

It does not seem definitive... an interesting note was how the two Sabal palmetto, growing in close proximity and looking identical in floral details, exhibited much variation genetically. Conversely, some of the palms that showed distinct floral differences were shown to be genetically identical... this paints a pretty ambiguous and enigmatical conclusion to a scientific paper. :interesting:

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Brahea Axel

From the article Axel posted, there is yet to be definitive proof of brazoriensis being a hybrid. Is there another more current article?

This one is from 2011 on Sabal x brazoriensis

http://www.mapress.com/phytotaxa/content/2011/f/pt00027p025.pdf

It does not seem definitive... an interesting note was how the two Sabal palmetto, growing in close proximity and looking identical in floral details, exhibited much variation genetically. Conversely, some of the palms that showed distinct floral differences were shown to be genetically identical... this paints a pretty ambiguous and enigmatical conclusion to a scientific paper. :interesting:

Did you expect anything different when it comes to sabal? :) This is one of the most adaptable palm genus on the planet, it's weathered the last ice age, a testament to the broad genetic adaptability via variability amongst them. Sabal lisa is a great demonstration as to how sabal are capable of mutating, and they are also quite capable of hybridizing and producing stable offsprings. For all these reasons sabal would be a great genus to use for genetic studies.

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WestCoastGal

Axel, last summer we bought one of the mature boxed Sabal minors that Sal had (OA 5 feet maybe). I chose this one because I liked that the inflourescence was held low and not rising above the fronds like the other S. minors he had. It has continued to put out new inflourescence (transplanting hasn't slowed it down at all). Flowers are still held low. As I recall I was told it was drought tolerant and would do well in our summer heat.

After researching Sabal minors after we bought ours, I'm still leaning towards thinking ours might be a S. etonia (the "scrub palmetto"). It came through our summer great last year without alot of water (reached 105 F) and made it through our 23 degree winter looking really healthy. I love it. I was told to give it a couple years in the ground before trying to reclassify it so we'll see if it's inflourescence ever gets taller or if it starts to put on a trunk. It also has some of the filaments which I don't think S. minors do and I think is more costapalmate than a S. minor. This is our first sabal but if I had more room in the sun would love to add another one or two. Maybe when our Trachy gets a bit larger and we trim more of the lower fronds away I'll have a sunny spot for at least one more.

BTW the Sabal miamiensis from what I've read is thought to be extinct due to all the development in the area.

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Ken Johnson

Axel, last summer we bought one of the mature boxed Sabal minors that Sal had (OA 5 feet maybe). I chose this one because I liked that the inflourescence was held low and not rising above the fronds like the other S. minors he had. It has continued to put out new inflourescence (transplanting hasn't slowed it down at all). Flowers are still held low. As I recall I was told it was drought tolerant and would do well in our summer heat.

After researching Sabal minors after we bought ours, I'm still leaning towards thinking ours might be a S. etonia (the "scrub palmetto"). It came through our summer great last year without alot of water (reached 105 F) and made it through our 23 degree winter looking really healthy. I love it. I was told to give it a couple years in the ground before trying to reclassify it so we'll see if it's inflourescence ever gets taller or if it starts to put on a trunk. It also has some of the filaments which I don't think S. minors do and I think is more costapalmate than a S. minor. This is our first sabal but if I had more room in the sun would love to add another one or two. Maybe when our Trachy gets a bit larger and we trim more of the lower fronds away I'll have a sunny spot for at least one more.

BTW the Sabal miamiensis from what I've read is thought to be extinct due to all the development in the area.

Sounds like it could be palmetto too. Dr. Zona described miamiensis and I think he corrected himself and said oops, its just a palmetto.

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Alicehunter2000

What do you all think? Will it show the Sabal Lisa trait? The tips are somewhat cupped ( hard to tell from pics) ..... looking forward to the first true leaf.post-97-0-53482800-1392869599_thumb.jpgpost-97-0-14004400-1392869629_thumb.jpgpost-97-0-47079000-1392869661_thumb.jpgpost-97-0-66153600-1392869698_thumb.jpg

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The Steve

Pictures of Sabal tamaulipas:

2dccb8.jpg

9b6da7.jpg

Do you think that there's any relation to S. rosei?

S. rosei is really very different, the fronds are narrower with a lot less leaflets, and the trunks are really tall. See the pic below I took at the Huntington:

DSCN2563_zps992f3241.jpg

Sorry, I meant S. pumos - but thanks for providing the distinction for S. rosei. You're right, the leaves on the photo you posted look far less circular, with fewer leaflets.

From what I've read, S. pumos has a bluish tinge to the leaves. But, upon further investigation, I read that it is similar in size to palmetto - much bigger than Sabal tamaulipas. In all this madness, I forgot that S. minor has a bluish tinge. I'm (as well as many others) still waiting for something definitive on Sabal identification.

Does anyone know if there has been anything that has been published in print specifically relating to the genus as a whole (that is commonly available)?

Edited by Sabal Steve

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The Steve

From the article Axel posted, there is yet to be definitive proof of brazoriensis being a hybrid. Is there another more current article?

This one is from 2011 on Sabal x brazoriensis

http://www.mapress.com/phytotaxa/content/2011/f/pt00027p025.pdf

Excellent article Eric. Nice to see additional scientific perspectives.

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Ken Johnson

Nice to see Sabal get some attention. It is one of the Americas most wide spread palm!

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palmislandRandy

What do you all think? Will it show the Sabal Lisa trait? The tips are somewhat cupped ( hard to tell from pics) ..... looking forward to the first true leaf.attachicon.gif20140219_220707.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220712.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220815.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220821.jpg

David, The leaves should grab the tip of your finger.

-Randy

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palmislandRandy

What do you all think? Will it show the Sabal Lisa trait? The tips are somewhat cupped ( hard to tell from pics) ..... looking forward to the first true leaf.attachicon.gif20140219_220707.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220712.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220815.jpgattachicon.gif20140219_220821.jpg

David, your's is looking Lisa ish. The leaves should be stiffining up a little also. Here's a pic of a few of mine from a few years ago. The first three turned into true Lisas.

-Randy

post-1035-0-80860200-1392910796_thumb.jp

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Zeeth

Looking at these lisas makes me think mine might not be one... It's hard to tell because it isn't cupping quite as much as yours but it hasn't gone fully palmate and it's pretty old...

What do you think? It's at 2:18 in this video

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palm tree man

Sabal should be studied and divided more. I know that you guys from Florida and the Gulf coast can attest to the fact that many varieties of butia have been grown here for at least a hundred years under the butia capitata banner. Yes, it is a variable species but just how variable can something be and still be considered the same species? Sabal in my opinion should be studied more closely and Sabal like Barzoria should be awared full undisputed species status. When dogs are bread they are often hybridized for certain traits and are in time given species status. It is just my opinion but many different varieties and types fo sabal should be given species status to eliminate all of the confusion, because even experts in academia have not idea what many of them are at times.

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Zeeth

Sabal should be studied and divided more. I know that you guys from Florida and the Gulf coast can attest to the fact that many varieties of butia have been grown here for at least a hundred years under the butia capitata banner. Yes, it is a variable species but just how variable can something be and still be considered the same species? Sabal in my opinion should be studied more closely and Sabal like Barzoria should be awared full undisputed species status. When dogs are bread they are often hybridized for certain traits and are in time given species status. It is just my opinion but many different varieties and types fo sabal should be given species status to eliminate all of the confusion, because even experts in academia have not idea what many of them are at times.

No breeds of dog are currently their own species, or even subspecies. They're all currently Canis lupis familiaris.

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Eric in Orlando

Anyone know any current information on Sabal "Nuevo Leon, Mexico" ? Is this a remnant S. minor or a hybrid ?

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palm tree man

I have heard of it but don't know much yet about it.

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Brahea Axel

OK, here are the sabal minor at the Huntington. I took this photo last December. This has been the source of many sabal minor in the Southern California trade. This thing is trunking and has several offsprings growing around it. By virtue of the trunk, this can't be a minor, so it's surely sabal louisiana.

DSCN2384_zps09c56def.jpg

You can see the clump in comparison to the rest of the surrounding palms on the South Hillside.

DSCN2387_zpsafa0d193.jpg

Close up of the petioles:

DSCN2386_zps89c8faf3.jpg

Close up of the inflorescence:

DSCN2385_zps2030878e.jpg

The label says minor, it should say "Louisiana".

DSCN2383_zpsb5c65bd7.jpg

.

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The Steve

OK, here are the sabal minor at the Huntington. I took this photo last December. This has been the source of many sabal minor in the Southern California trade. This thing is trunking and has several offsprings growing around it. By virtue of the trunk, this can't be a minor, so it's surely sabal louisiana. DSCN2384_zps09c56def.jpg You can see the clump in comparison to the rest of the surrounding palms on the South Hillside. DSCN2387_zpsafa0d193.jpg Close up of the petioles: DSCN2386_zps89c8faf3.jpg Close up of the inflorescence:DSCN2385_zps2030878e.jpg The label says minor, it should say "Louisiana". DSCN2383_zpsb5c65bd7.jpg .

Shouldn't it say "s. minor var. louisiana"? I thought the consensus was that S. louisiana was not a specific species - just one of the variations of minor.

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Brahea Axel

OK, here are the sabal minor at the Huntington. I took this photo last December. This has been the source of many sabal minor in the Southern California trade. This thing is trunking and has several offsprings growing around it. By virtue of the trunk, this can't be a minor, so it's surely sabal louisiana. DSCN2384_zps09c56def.jpg You can see the clump in comparison to the rest of the surrounding palms on the South Hillside. DSCN2387_zpsafa0d193.jpg Close up of the petioles: DSCN2386_zps89c8faf3.jpg Close up of the inflorescence:DSCN2385_zps2030878e.jpg The label says minor, it should say "Louisiana". DSCN2383_zpsb5c65bd7.jpg .

Shouldn't it say "s. minor var. louisiana"? I thought the consensus was that S. louisiana was not a specific species - just one of the variations of minor.

True forms of minor do not have above ground trunks. Louisiana is most likely a hybrid. Even the inflorescence does not extend beyond the leaves the way it does for a true minor.

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