Veitchia Merrillii | Christmas Palm
Veitchia merrillii is commonly known as Christmas Palm Tree, Manila Palm is one of the rare palms in India. It plays an important role in tropical landscapes because few other palm species are so well suited for small sites. This is a palm tree species native to the Philippines. This palm was cultivated for centuries in East Asia before becoming a staple in the West. It is reportedly naturalized in the West Indies and Florida. It has a lot of similar characteristics with Royal Palm Tree and sometimes is even called dwarf royal palm.
- Rare Plant or difficult to get plant
- Good for screening
- Suitable for road median planting
- Suitable for avenue planting
- Grows best in humid and warm regions
During summer months the Christmas Palm produces light green flower buds that turn into creamy blossom. Unisexual flowers are held by 2ft long branched stalks that emerge from the area where the crownshaft attaches to the trunk. In December flowers are followed by green oval fruits that turn bright red as they ripe. Berrie-like fruits are 1 inch long and 1/5 inch wide. They hang in clusters looking like Christmas ornament, therefore palm’s common name is Christmas Palm.
It likes full sun but can also grow in broken shade. The Christmas Palm is moderately salt tolerant prefers moist well drained soil. To avoid root rot don’t let it sit in water. It can tolerate drought for a short time when mature enough.
It does not require much maintenance. The only thing you need to do is to remove old dead leaves to keep it looking neat. To prevent nutritional deficiency, apply good quality palm fertilizer that has continuous release formula twice a year during growing season.
Features of Christmas Palm
|Scientific name:||Veitchia merrillii or Adonidia merrillii|
|Common names:||Christmas Palm, Manila Palm, Kerpis Palm, Adonidia Palm, Dwarf Royal Palm, Veitchia Palm.|
|Origin:||Native to Philippines|
|Growth Rate:||Moderate to Fast. Up to 15 – 25 ft tall and 4-5 ft wide.|
|Cold Tolerance:||USDA Zones 10b (35 to 40 F) to 11 (above 40 F)|
|Light Req:||Full sun to partial shade.|
|Soil Req:||Widely adaptable|
|Fruit:||Yes. Red, glossy. Not edible.|