Pritchardia pacifica - Plant
Description for Pritchardia pacifica
Pritchardia pacifica is one of the most attractive Pritchardia species with a smooth, attractive trunk and large, nearly round, barely split, flat fan leaves held in the crown. It is grown widely in tropical countries and sought after by collectors.
It is a gray-trunked tree (mature trunk diameter to 12") which grows slowly to as much as 20-30 tall in tropical areas, but smaller when grown indoors in containers as a house plant. It features huge, many-segmented, palmate, fan-shaped, lime green leaves to 6 long and nearly as wide.
A light, flexible wood was used to construct a border for the leaves. In Fijian, the term Ai viu refers to both a fan and an umbrella, as the leaves of Fiji fan palm were used for protection from both the sun and the rain.
Fragrant brown flowers bloom on inflorescences to 3 feet long. Round fruits (each to 1/2" diameter) in large clusters emerge green but mature to dark brown/black.
|Common name||Flower colours||Bloom time||Height||Difficulty|
|Fiji Fan Palm, Loulu||-||-||More than 40 feet||Easy.|
Planting and care
According to its habitat Pritchardia pacifica may be salt tolerant, slow growing and modest in its requirement.
This species is particularly tolerant of seaside conditions and salt spray, making it an excellent choice for planting along the coasts in the tropics.
With a particularly windy climate it is suggested to secure young palm to long solid stakes, to avoid that the wind could bare young and not very developed roots.
Specimens which are only a few years old might fear intense wind, but as it becomes a tall palm it can look ratty after the winds.
|Prefers full sun but will tolerate half day sun.||Sand, cinder or organic soil is adaptable. Good drainage is also important.||It tolerates low levels of humidity, though it prefers evenly moist but not consistently wet medium. When supplied with adequate moisture and fertilizer it is also fairly fast growing. This palm is moderately drought tolerant once established. |
It dislikes soggy soils. The roots and lower trunk can rot if soil is kept too moist. Water young plants for healthy look and fastest growth.
|It is adapted to tropical and subtropical climates but tolerate a wide range of climates and will even tolerate cool conditions, where winter temperatures go below 5Â°C. |
In favourable temperate climate they should be grown in cold green houses or at least in a place where they are sheltered by the wind; However mature specimens can endure light frost (for short periods), while young plants are more cold sensitive. Best kept above 5Â° C.
|Need a perfect fertilizer diet including all micro nutrients and trace elements or slow release fertilizer. Fertilize often for faster growth.|
Caring for Pritchardia pacifica
- The dead leaves, flowers and fruits can be removed in a landscape setting for a cleaner appearance.
Do not prune the fronds that still have some green colour since Palms recycle nutrients from dead or dying fronds and use them for healthier fronds.
Typical uses of Pritchardia pacifica
Special features: The strikingly beautiful Pritchardia pacifica is excellent as a garden or landscape ornamental specimen.
Town and city planners just love planting them along road median, byways and highways, or mass-plant them at roundabouts.
A favourite with landscapers that use them to beautify the grounds of commercial properties and public places, such as parks and gardens.
Ornamental use: It is one of most cultivated ornamental palm, planted in gardens and parks in tropical and sub-tropical climates either as a single specimen in small groves of three or more palms. Culture in containers is possible although growth rates are slower. A bright patio will provide an excellent environment for young specimens which can eventually be planted in a sunny location.