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Travelers Palm - Ravenala madagascariensis
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Written by Real Palm Trees   

Travelers Palm

The Travelers Palm can make any area or landscape become a centerpiece of attention. The Travelers Palm has come along way from off its originally native habitat, Madagascar. What makes this plant so desirable is its awe-inspiring appeal from its large paddle-like leaves. Another good characteristic is its ability to adapt to a wide range of soils and its ability to create a wonderful shaded area in the yard or the pool. Another great aspect of the Travelers Palm is the easy maintenance with pruning. There is no need for a saw or other tool when pruning, the leaves of the Travelers palm just fall off. Below I have listed a few "Do It Yourself" tips for planting a palm tree in your next interior design project!

DIY - Landscape Design

Before doing any landscaping make sure you have a plan or design. Figure out what palms or plants you would like to use and where you would like to plant them. Using a Travelers palm in your design will bring a focal point to any yard or garden when placed in the center. So if you would like to attract attention place it in the center of your yard and place small plants or palms around the trunk and mulch the ground. If you just enjoy the plant and want to have it in your collection or your landscape then place it beside your home or business, just make sure there is sufficient area for the leaves and trunk to grow.

DIY - Indoor Design

Bienvenidos! Your plane is just now arriving. Everyone that has ever traveled to any tropical area south of the states, remembers that phrase. You knew you were going to have a good time, well you can still have a good time in your own home with the right assortment of palms and the right assortment of ideas. If creating that tropical feel in your home, use vibrant colors for pots. Use the Travelers palm as a green garden wall and place ferns or small palms around the ground. Purchase a small trickling fountain for added ambiance or even go to the pet store and purchase a couple canary birds or love birds for the inside area. For an added bonus, place tiki-torches and tropical lighting in the area. So whether you are creating a sen garden or a romantic getaway, the options are endless. Just add some creativity and you got yourself an oasis from the daily routine and dont forget the strawberry daiquiri!

Please, feel free to comment on this article. Any new design ideas, comments, or appreciation is welcomed.

Travelers Palm Overview:

Travelers Palm Naming Conventions:

Palm Name: Travelers Palm - (trav-el-ers) (Palm)
Common Name(s): Traveler Palm, Traveler Palm, Travelers Tree, Travellers Palm, Ravenala
Botanical Name: Ravenala madagascariensis - (ra-VEN-ah-la) (mad-uh-gas-KAR-ee-EN-sis)
Synonym(s): Ravenala madagascariensis

Travelers Palm Plant Classification:

Linnaean Taxonomy SystemLinnaean Taxonomy System:

Superdomain: Neomura Palm Tree Information Theoretical Group
Domain: Eukaryota - (Eu-kary-ote) Palm Tree Information 4 Organisms - Animals, plants, fungi, and protists
Kingdom: Plantae (Plants) Palm Tree Information 3 Groups - Streptophyta (Green Plants), Rhodophyta (Red Algae ), and Glaucophyta (Green Microscopic Algae)
Subkingdom: Streptophyta (also known as Streptophytes, Metaphytes, or Viridiplantae) Palm Tree Information Green Plants
Super Division: Embryophyta (also known as Embryophytes) Palm Tree Information Land Plants
Division: Tracheophyta (also known as Tracheophytes or Tracheobionta) Palm Tree Information Vascular plants - higher plant life
Division: Spermatophyta (also known as Spermatophytes or Phanerogams) Palm Tree Information Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta (also commonly known as Angiosperms) Palm Tree Information Flowering plants
Plant Class: Monocotyledons or Monocots (also known as Monocotyledoneae or Monocotyledones) Palm Tree Information One embryonic seed leaf
Palm Family: Strelitziaceae - (stre-lit-seas-ee)
Palm Genus: Ravenala - (ra-VEN-ah-la)
Palm Species: madagascariensis - (mad-uh-gas-KAR-ee-EN-sis)

Travelers Palm General Description:

One of the most awe-inspiring natural plants in the world is known as the Travelers Palm, however this plant is not really a palm tree at all. The Travelers Palm is a palm-like plant from the Strelitziaceae family, similar to the Bird of Paradise. The Travelers Palm gained its name from travelers who stumbled across its leaves and found a water reservoir. This reservoir, located between the leaves, would help not only the Travelers but also wildlife and insects in time of need. The Travelers Palm is highly recognizable due to its paddle like green leaves that can grow up to 13 feet long in a fan formation. The fan-like leaves of the Travelers Palm form a perfect semi-circle above the ground. The Travelers Palm is originally from an island off the coast of Africa called Madagascar. In its native habitat, the Travelers Palm grows to massive heights and appear as giant propellers from an airplane. The average height of a Travelers Palm can reach over 40 feet and its trunk can reach over 2 feet in diameter. The Travelers Palm leaves usually spread over 20 feet long from tip to tip and create a wonderful area of shade. The Travelers Palm is not particular about the soil which is used as long as it has organic matter. The Travelers palm enjoys full sun and thrives in moist soil conditions. It can be found producing thorn-like pods, which emerge between the leaves, year-round. These thorn-like pods contain blue seeds which could be harvested and replanted. Whether you have the Travelers Palm inside or outside, it makes a wonderful social piece and an immediate feel of the tropics.

Travelers Palm Habitat:

Palm Continent of Origin: Africa
Palm Country of Origin: Madagascar
Indoor/ Outdoor: Both
Palm North America Outdoor Hardiness: USDA Zone 9a: -6.6 C (20 F) to USDA Zone 11: above 40 F (4.5 C)
Palm Europe/ UK Outdoor Hardiness: Europe Zone 9: -7C (20 F) to Europe Zone 11: above 40 F (4.5 C)
Palm Cold Toleration: Approximately 20 - 40F

Travelers Palm Tree Physical Appearance:

Palm Height: 25 - 40 ft
Palm Spread: 20 - 65 ft (Horizontal Spread)
Palm Trunk: The Travelers Palm has a very unique trunk which emerges as it matures. During the beginning years the trunk of the Travelers Palm is underneath the ground. As the Travelers palm grows it loses its fan-like leaves and reveals a brown rigid trunk.
Palm Foliage: The Travelers Palm has paddle-shaped leaves which are lined symmetrically on a plane. This symmetrical appearance gives a fan-like appearance to the Travelers Palm. The color of the Travelers Palm varies from the tip of the leaves, which is green, to the end of the leaf stem which is yellow.
Palm Foliage Growth Direction: The Travelers Palm grows outward as a young plant and as it matures, grows upwards.
Palm Flowering: When the Travelers Palm is ready to flower it developes green pods which appear as horns. These pods form between the the leaves close to the heart of the plant. White to an off-white flower is produced from these horn-like pods which is similar to the Bird of Paradise.
Palm Fruits: The fruits found on the Travelers Palm are small seeds covered with blue fibers.
Palm Fruits Edible:The Travelers Palm fruit is not edible.
Palm Leaf Type: Pinnate

Travelers Palm Growth Attributes:

Palm Speed of growth:Moderate
Palm Radial Spacing: 20 - 30 ft when planted horizontally and 5 10 ft when planted vertically.
Sun Exposure: Full sun to light sun
Drought Toleration: Little to none
Salt Toleration: Low
Bloom Time: All year round

Travelers Palm Caring and Maintenance:

Palm Caring: Moderate, to maintain and thrive.
Soil: The Travelers Palm is adaptable to wide range of soils with some organic matter.
Soil Types:Acidic with organic matter or Alkaline with organic matter and/or a mixture of both.
Water: Regularly water soil for soil moisture. Ensure good drainage of water.
Fertilizer:The Travelers Palm tends to need fertilizer for optimum growth. Using fertilizer spikes will feed the Travelers Palm year round. Also, use 100% organic or organic based fertilizers for best results.
Potting and Planting: The Travelers Palm can be potted and used indoors and outdoors. When potting the Travelers Palm, make sure the soil used has organic matter and that the pot used has openings for water drainage. When planting the Travelers Palm outdoors, ensure that there is enough area for the leaves to grow.

Travelers Palm Tree Environmental Impact:

The Travelers Palm is a native to Madagascar, where they tend to grow to mammoth proportions. Many birds and insects are attracted to the Travelers palm because of the water which is held inside its reservoirs. The Travelers Palm has a small ecosystem held between its leaves. The Travelers Palm has helped not only wildlife but also people over the ages. The Travelers palm received its name by travelers who needed water on their voyages.

Travelers Palm Seed, Cultivation, and Propagation:

Palm Seed Size: The seed size is approximately an inch and under.
Palm Seed Attributes: The Travelers Palm seed is brown and waxy feeling with blue fibers emanating from the seed.
Palm Seed Harvesting: The seeds of the Travelers Palm is best harvested when the pods are brown and ripe. The seed of the Travelers Palm does not need to be cleaned or the fibers removed.
Palm Seed Propagation: The Travelers Palm seeds typically germinate in less than 2 months if properly humidified. Seeds have a better chance of germinating if the process is done by human intervention.
Palm Seed Shelf Life: One year if treated and stored properly.
Palm Seed and Growing:Growing a Travelers Palm seed is best accomplished by using humidity containers and rich organic soil. The average temperature that the seed should be left in is between 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

Travelers Palm Nurture and Nature:

Nurture vs. Nature: The Travelers Palm can be potted and taken care of with ease, when placed in the right environment. Although the it can be grown indoors, the ideal area to grow a Travelers Palm is in the outdoors, because of its need for sunlight.
Palm Transplanting: Prior to transplanting, the palm needs to be fertilized and sprayed down with any insecticides or pesticides, Transplanting will be less of a shock for the Travelers Palm when properly done with care. The Travelers Palm does not have any tendencies of dieing during transplant nor does it have any main diseases or pests which would cause it to whither away.

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