1. Family: Arecaceae Bercht. & J.Presl
    1. Genus: Phoenix L.
      1. Phoenix reclinata Jacq.

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Tropical & S. Africa, Comoros, Madagascar, SW. Arabian Peninsula.

    [FTEA]

    Palmae, John Dransfield. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1994

    Habit
    Clustering, very rarely solitary palm, often forming dense thickets with trunks ultimately to 10 m. or more tall, ± 15 cm. diameter, occasionally flowering while still acaulescent.
    Trunk
    Trunk dull brown, free of leaf-sheaths below, with persistent leaf-sheaths above, in uppermost 1–2 m. irregularly marked with oblique leaf-scars, and bearing persistent leaf-bases; injured stem exuding a clear yellowish gum.
    Leaves
    Crown of ± 25 green leaves or more, dead leaves frequently rather long-persistent. Leaf to 2.5 m. long, bright shiny green, not glaucous, arcuate; true petiole ± 15 cm., with coarse red-brown sacking-like sheath; apparent petiole ± 50 cm. long by 2.5 cm. wide, armed with fanned irregularly arranged acanthophylls to 6 cm. long by 4 mm. wide; leaflets ± 120 on each side of the rachis, arranged very stiffly and regularly above, grouped below in 2’s–4’s, fanned, to 25 cm. long by 2 cm. wide, pointed, occasionally sharply so, when old splitting along the main vein, when young bearing caducous white indumentum on the lower surface.
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescences with prophyll 20–50 cm. long by 7–10 cm. wide, often long persisting, frequently splitting longitudinally into 2 halves, bright orangey brown at anthesis, fading to dull grey-brown, covered with flocculent caducous grey-brown indumentum when young. Peduncle of ♂ inflorescence not greatly elongating, sometimes scarcely emerging from the bract, 10–30 cm. long by ± 1.5 cm. wide, greatly compressed; rachillae 40–70 in number, arranged in groups and partial spirals, to 15 cm. long, usually much less, 2.5 mm. in diameter near the base, tapering to 1.5 mm. distally. Female inflorescence emerging from the bract and often greatly elongating after anthesis, with the fruiting rachillae pendulous; rachillae ± 40–60, 15–40 cm. long, bearing up to 40 greenish flowers, singly or in small groups.
    Flowers
    Male flowers creamy white, rapidly turning brown, musty scented; calyx ± 1 mm. high; petals ± 6–7 mm. long, acute, fleshy, somewhat dentate towards the tip, the tip slightly reflexed at anthesis; stamens 6, slightly shorter than the petals, pale brown. Female flowers greenish, rounded, ± 2 mm. in diameter; calyx ± 1.5 mm. high; petals rounded ± 2 mm. by 2 mm.; carpels 3, ± 2 mm. high, the stigmas reflexed, just emerging from the tightly imbricating petals.
    Male
    Male flowers creamy white, rapidly turning brown, musty scented; calyx ± 1 mm. high; petals ± 6–7 mm. long, acute, fleshy, somewhat dentate towards the tip, the tip slightly reflexed at anthesis; stamens 6, slightly shorter than the petals, pale brown. Peduncle of ♂ inflorescence not greatly elongating, sometimes scarcely emerging from the bract, 10–30 cm. long by ± 1.5 cm. wide, greatly compressed; rachillae 40–70 in number, arranged in groups and partial spirals, to 15 cm. long, usually much less, 2.5 mm. in diameter near the base, tapering to 1.5 mm. distally.
    Female
    Female flowers greenish, rounded, ± 2 mm. in diameter; calyx ± 1.5 mm. high; petals rounded ± 2 mm. by 2 mm.; carpels 3, ± 2 mm. high, the stigmas reflexed, just emerging from the tightly imbricating petals. Female inflorescence emerging from the bract and often greatly elongating after anthesis, with the fruiting rachillae pendulous; rachillae ± 40–60, 15–40 cm. long, bearing up to 40 greenish flowers, singly or in small groups.
    Fruits
    Fruit almost always developed from 1 carpel only, very rarely all 3 developing; calyx in fruit to 2 mm. high; petals in fruit to 5 mm. high by 8 mm. wide; fruit 1.3–1.7 cm. long by 0.9–1.3 cm. wide, varying from pale yellow to orange or dull red; epicarp smooth; mesocarp 1–2 mm. thick, dry or moist and sweet.
    Seeds
    Seed 1–1.2 cm. long by 0.6–0.8 cm. wide, deeply grooved along one side; embryo lateral.
    Figures
    Fig.1.
    Habitat
    In the lowlands, tending to grow along watercourses; in high rainfall areas and in the mountains, growing also on open rocky hillsides, cliffs and even in rain-forest, but here, apparently confined to areas where the canopy is sparse; sea-level to 3000 m.
    Distribution
    elsewhere throughout the moister parts of tropical Africa south of the Sahara, almost reaching the Cape of Good Hope       Africa   coastal towns, upland towns K1 K4 K5 K6 K7 P T1 T2 T3 T4 T5 T6 T7 U1
    [FWTA]

    Palmae, T. A. Russell. Flora of West Tropical Africa 3:1. 1968

    Habit
    A tufted palm, often forming clumps, the stems occasionally as tall as 28 ft. but commonly much less
    Ecology
    In sunny places where there is good moisture for its roots.
    [PW]
    Biology
    Phoenix reclinata is a widely distributed species growing in a range of habitats, often seasonally water-logged or inundated, such as along watercourses, in high rainfall areas, in riverine forest, and even in rainforest areas (although always restricted to areas of sparse canopy). The species can also be found in drier conditions on rocky hillsides, cliffs and grasslands to 3000 m. The fruits of P. reclinata are animal-dispersed: their bright orange colour and sweet, slightly fleshy mesocarp is attractive to birds (parrots) (Schonland 1924), elephants (Corner 1966), lemurs (Petter et al. 1977), mangabey (forest monkeys) (Kinnaird 1992) and humans.
    Vernacular
    KENYA. mkindu (Swahili), gonyoorriya (Boni), meti (Digo), gedo (Ilwana), makindu (Kikuyu), sosiyot (Kipsigis), othith (Luo), ol-tukai (Maasai), konchor (Orma), itikindu (Sanya), alol (Somali), mhongana (Taveta), kigangatehi (Taita), nakadoki (Turkana), [Beentje (1994)]; mangatche [Kilimanjaro Distr., Greenway 3037 (K!)]. MADAGASCAR. Dara, taratra, taratsy, [Jumelle & Perrier (1913, 1945) ]; calalou, [Morondava, Greve 154 (P!) ]. NIGERIA. Kajinjiri, dabino biri (Hausa), [Northern Prov., Zaria, Conservator ofForests s.n. (K!)]; deli (Fulani), kabba (Hausa), [Mambila Plateau, Hepper 1705 (K!)]. RWANDA. Umukindo, [Troupin (1987)]. SIERRA LEONE. Shaka-Le (Sherbro), kundi (Mende), [Bonthe Is., Deighton 2397 (K!)]. SOUTrH AFRICA. Dikindu, makindu (Mbukushu), makerewa, shikerewa (Diriko), [Okavanga, De Winter & Wiss 4800 (K!)]. TANZANIA. Daro, taratra, mkindwi (Swahili), [Lamu Distr., Dransfield 4799 (K!)]; Luchingu (Fipa), [Mbugwe, Bullock 3074 (K!)]; kihangaga (Urukindu), [Lake Prov., Tanner 5845 (K!)]. UGANDA. Itchi (Madi), lukindu (Luganda, Lunyoro), musansa (Luganda, Busoga dialect), [Eggeling (1940)]; Wild Date Palm, enkinu (Luamba), emusogot (Ateso), ekingol (Karamojong), lukindu, mukindu (Luganda, Lunyoro, Lutoro), makendu (Lugisu), muyiti (Lugwe), otit (Luo. Acholi and Lango dialects), tit (Luo, Lango and Jonam dialects), itchi (Madi), kikindu (Lunyuli), lusansa (Lusoga), [Hamilton (1981)].
    Distribution
    Phoenix reclinata occurs throughout tropical and subtropical Africa, northern and southwestern Madagascar and the Comoro Islands.
    General Description
    Clustering palm, often thicket-forming. Stem 10 (12) m, erect or oblique, without leaf sheaths to 20 cm in diam., dull brown, with persistent leaf sheaths 1 - 2 m below crown, otherwise becoming smooth, irregularly marked with oblique internode scars, cracked vertically; injured stem exuding clear yellowish gum. Leaves arcuate, c. 2 - 3.5 m long; leaf sheath fibrous, reddish-brown; pseudopetiole rounded abaxially, smooth, often channelled adaxially, to 50 cm long; acanthophylls irregularly arranged, often congested proximally, c. 10 - 15 on each side of rachis, 3 - 9 cm long; leaflets regularly arranged distally in one plane of orientation but median and proximal leaflets in fascicles of 3 - 5 and often fanned, c. 80 - 130 on each side of rachis, 28 - 45 x 2.2- 3.6 cm; leaflet margin minutely crenulate; lamina concolorous, abaxial surface with white scurfy ramenta in midrib region. Staminate inflorescence erect; prophyll green-yellow in bud, strongly 2-keeled, coriaceous, splitting 1 or 2 times between margins, 40 - 60 x 5 - 6 cm; peduncle 10 - 30 x 1.3 cm, not greatly elongating beyond prophyll; rachis 17 - 30 cm; rachillae congestedly arranged in a narrow bush, numerous, 6 - 20 cm long. Staminate flowers creamy- white; calyx cupule 1 mm high; petals with apex acute-acuminate in shape and with jagged margins, 3 (rarely 4), 6 - 7 x 2 - 3 mm. Pistillate inflorescence erect, arching with weight of fruits; prophyll as for staminate inflorescence; peduncle green-yellow turning orange-brown, becoming pendulous on fruit maturity, to 60 - 1.5 cm; rachillae spirally arranged often in irregular horizontal whorls, c. 19 - 40 in number, to 6 - 55 cm long. Pistillate flowers usually only one carpel reaching maturity, 3 - 4 mm high. Fruit ovoid-ellipsoid or almost obovoid, ripening yellow to bright orange, 13 - 20 x 7 - 13 mm; mesocarp sweet, scarcely fleshy, c. 1 - 2 mm thick. Seed obovoid, with rounded apices, 12 - 14 x 5 - 6 mm; embryo lateral opposite raphe; endosperm homogeneous.
    Conservation
    Not threatened.
    [PW]
    Use
    All parts of P. reclinata palms are used for a range of purposes. Trunks are used as beams and poles in construction. Whole leaves are used as door entrances and covers, or fans for stoking fires and repelling insects. The leaf rachis is used for making thatch, floor mats and fish traps. It also forms a component of wattle for the construction of mud houses. Leaflets from sucker shoots are harvested for making baskets, hats, brushes, building ties, woven dolls and ornaments. The fruits are eaten as a snack and the seeds can be dried and ground into flour (Sierra Leone, Deighton 2397, K!). The palm heart is occasionally eaten as a vegetable. The sap is fermented into an alcoholic beverage and has been recorded as a remedy against urinary infections [Lake Prov., Tanner 5845 (K!)]. For a detailed study of the uses of P. reclinata in Tanzania see Kinnaird (1992).

    Images

    Distribution

    Native to:

    Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Provinces, Caprivi Strip, Central African Repu, Comoros, Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Northern Provinces, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Yemen, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

    Introduced into:

    Bermuda, Florida, Leeward Is., Puerto Rico, Trinidad-Tobago

    Common Names

    English
    Dwarf date palm, Feather palm, Wild date palm

    Phoenix reclinata Jacq. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Jul 18, 2006 Frontier-Tanzania [1210], Tanzania K000209382
    Jun 15, 2006 Bourobou, H.P. [916], Gabon K000208972
    Mar 31, 2004 Bayton, R.P. [67], Burkina Faso K000521954
    Jan 1, 2001 Barthelat, F. [266], Comoros K000300297
    Feb 1, 1999 Etuge, M. [3572], Cameroon K000678185
    Nov 13, 1998 s.coll. [s.n.], Botswana 66835.000
    Jan 25, 1996 Collenette, I.S. [6701], Saudi Arabia K000208712
    Jan 1, 1995 Beentje, H.J. [4692], Madagascar K000300216
    Jan 1, 1995 Beentje, H.J. [4691], Madagascar K000300217
    Jan 1, 1995 Humbert, H. [11298], Madagascar K000300213
    Jan 1, 1995 Baron, R. [4839], Madagascar K000300209
    Jan 1, 1995 Baron, R. [4776], Madagascar K000300210
    Jan 1, 1995 Baron, R. [6724], Madagascar K000300290
    Jan 1, 1995 Baron, R. [6724], Madagascar K000300291
    Jan 1, 1995 Bernardi, L. [11792], Comoros K000300214
    Jan 1, 1995 Bernardi, L. [11792], Comoros K000300215
    Jan 1, 1995 Boivin, M. [2289], Madagascar K000300211 syntype
    Jan 1, 1995 Boivin, M. [3100], Comoros K000300212 syntype
    Wild, H. [3109], Zimbabwe 23577.000
    Meikle, R.D. [973], Nigeria 7114.000
    Harley, R.M. [9177], Tanzania 6449.000
    Wood, J.R.I. [1759], Yemen K000208711
    Beentje, H.J. [4691], Madagascar 65070.000
    Milne-Redhead, P. [7320 A], Tanzania 40547.000
    Collenette, I.S. [7302], Saudi Arabia K000208709
    Goyder, D.J. [3928], Tanzania 63969.000
    Baron, R. [2319], Madagascar K000300288 syntype
    Baron, R. [2319], Madagascar K000300289 syntype
    Baron, R. [2319], Madagascar K000300286 syntype
    Baron, R. [2319], Madagascar K000300287 syntype
    Hildebrandt, J.M. [3304], Madagascar K000697893 syntype
    Jumelle, H. [s.n.], Madagascar K000300208
    Biegel, H. [5042], Botswana K000489231
    Biegel, H. [4018], Botswana K000489232
    Biegel, H. [4018], Botswana K000489233
    Biegel, H. [4018], Botswana K000489234
    Van Valkenburg [2504], Gabon K000209667
    Timberlake, J. [5362], Malawi K000614705

    First published in Fragm. 1: 27 (1858)

    Accepted by

    • Baksh-Comeau, Y., Maharaj, S.S., Adams, C.D., Harris, S.A., Filer, D.L. & Hawthorne, W.D. (2016). An annotated checklist of the vascular plants of Trinidad and Tobago with analysis of vegetation types and botanical 'hotspots' Phytotaxa 250: 1-431.
    • Darbyshire, I., Kordofani, M., Farag, I., Candiga, R. & Pickering, H. (eds.) (2015). The Plants of Sudan and South Sudan: 1-400. Kew publishing, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Thiombiano, A., Schmidt, M., Dressler, S., Ouédraogo, A., Hahn, K. & Zizka, G. (2012). Catalogue des plantes vasculaires du Burkina Faso Boissiera 65: 1-391.
    • Acevedo-Rodríguez, P. & Strong, M.T. (2012). Catalogue of seed plants of the West Indies Smithsonian Contributions to Botany 98: 1-1192.
    • Timberlake, J.R. & Martins, E.S. (eds.) (2010). Flora Zambesiaca 13(2): 1-83. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Fischer, E., Rembold, K., Althof, A. & Obholzer, J. (2010). Annotated checklist of the vascular plants of Kakamega forest, Western province, Kenya Journal of East African Natural History 99: 129-226.
    • Timberlake, J.R., Bayliss, J., Alves, T., Francisco, J., Harris, T., Nangoma, D. & de Sousa, C. (2009). Biodiversity and Conservation of Mchese Mountain, Malawi. Report produced under the Darwin Initiative Award 15/036: 1-71. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Meyer, J.-Y., Lavergne, C. & Hodel, D.R. (2008). Time bombs in gardens: invasive ornamental palms in tropical islands, with emphasis on French Polynesia (Pacific Ocean) and the Mascarenes (Indian Ocean) Palms; Journal of the International Palm Society 52: 23-35.
    • Catarino, L., Martins, E.S., Diniz, M.A. & Pinto-Basto, M.F. (2006). Check-list da flora vascular do parque natural das Lagos de Cufada (Guiné-Bissau) Garcia de Orta, Série de Botânica 17: 97-141.
    • Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mt. Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34: 1-199.
    • Akoègninou, A., van der Burg, W.J. & van der Maesen, L.J.G. (eds.) (2006). Flore Analytique du Bénin: 1-1034. Backhuys Publishers.
    • Govaerts, R. & Dransfield, J. (2005). World Checklist of Palms: 1-223. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Brunel, J.F., Hiepo, P. & Scholz, H. (eds.) (1984). Flore Analytique du Togo Phanérogames: 1-751. GTZ, Eschborn.
    • Boulvert, Y. (1977). Catalogue de la Flore de Centrafrique 3: 1-89. ORSTOM, Bangui.

    Literature

    Palmweb - Palms of the World Online
    • S.C. Barrow, A Monograph of Phoenix L. (Palmae: Coryphoideae). 1998
    Flora of West Tropical Africa
    • F.T.A. 8: 103.
    • Beccari in Malesia 3: 349 (1890)
    • Fragm. 1: 27, t. 24 (1801)
    Kew Backbone Distributions
    • Baksh-Comeau, Y., Maharaj, S.S., Adams, C.D., Harris, S.A., Filer, D.L. & Hawthorne, W.D. (2016). An annotated checklist of the vascular plants of Trinidad and Tobago with analysis of vegetation types and botanical 'hotspots' Phytotaxa 250: 1-431.
    • Darbyshire, I., Kordofani, M., Farag, I., Candiga, R. & Pickering, H. (eds.) (2015). The Plants of Sudan and South Sudan: 1-400. Kew publishing, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • Thiombiano, A., Schmidt, M., Dressler, S., Ouédraogo, A., Hahn, K. & Zizka, G. (2012). Catalogue des plantes vasculaires du Burkina Faso Boissiera 65: 1-391.
    • Acevedo-Rodríguez, P. & Strong, M.T. (2012). Catalogue of seed plants of the West Indies Smithsonian Contributions to Botany 98: 1-1192.
    • Meyer, J.-Y., Lavergne, C. & Hodel, D.R. (2008). Time bombs in gardens: invasive ornamental palms in tropical islands, with emphasis on French Polynesia (Pacific Ocean) and the Mascarenes (Indian Ocean) Palms; Journal of the International Palm Society 52: 23-35.
    • Curtis, B. & Mannheimer, C. (2005). Tree Atlas of Namibia: 1-688. The National Botanical Research Institute, Windhoek.
    • Audru, J., Cesar, J. & Lebrun, J.-P. (1994). Les Plantes Vasculaires de la République de Djibouti. Flore Illustrée 1: 1-336. CIRAD, Départerment d'Elevage et de Médecine vétérinaire, Djibouti.
    • Brunel, J.F., Hiepo, P. & Scholz, H. (eds.) (1984). Flore Analytique du Togo Phanérogames: 1-751. GTZ, Eschborn.
    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    • Troupin, Fl. Pl. Lign., Rwanda: 70, fig. 18 (1982).
    • Hamilton, Uganda For. Trees: 75 (1981).
    • T.A. Russell in Flora of West Tropical Africa, ed. 2, 3: 169 (1968).
    • Dale & Greenway, Kenya Trees and Shrubs p. 12 (1961).
    • F. W. Andr., The Flowering Plants of the Sudan 3: 304 (1956).
    • W.J. Eggeling, Indigenous Trees of the Uganda Protectorate, ed. 2: 293, photo. 47 (1952).
    • R. O. Williams, Useful and Ornamental Plants in Zanzibar and Pemba p. 411 (1949).
    • A. Engler & O. Drude, Die Vegetation Der Erde, IX, Pflanzenwelt Afrikas 2: 224, t. 10, fig. 149 (1908).
    • C.H. Wright in Flora of Tropical Africa 8: 103 (1901).
    • Warb. in Die Pflanzenwelt Ost-Afrikas und der Nachbargebiete, Theile C: 130 (1895).
    • Becc. in Malesia 3: 349 (1890).
    • Jacq., Fragm. Bot.: 27, t. 24 (1801).

    Sources

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Flora of West Tropical Africa
    Flora of West Tropical Africa
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
    'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet http://www.kew.org/herbcat [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2018. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2018. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Palmweb - Palms of the World Online
    Palmweb 2011. Palmweb: Palms of the World Online. Published on the internet http://www.palmweb.org. Accessed on 21/04/2013
    Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Plants and People Africa
    Common Names from Plants and People Africa http://www.plantsandpeopleafrica.com/
    © Plants and People Africa http://www.plantsandpeopleafrica.com http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/