The Plant That Started It All
This is the plant that started it all for me. While looking at photo's of Mormon Temples in different countries I came across a photo of one with Travellers Palms Growing around it (The Accra Ghana Temple) and I was Sold! ( The very same photo to the left is the same one that sold me on this tree.)The traveler's palm gets its name from the fact that thirsty travelers could find stores of water in many parts of the plant including the leaf folds, flower bracts and inside each of the hollow leaf bases each of which may hold up to one quart of water! The traveler's palm (not a true palm) has been described as being part banana plant and part palm tree. A mature traveler's palm may bloom year round and produce brown fruits that contain light blue seeds. The traveler's palm is unique in nature and is monotypic, meaning it is the only species in its genus. It is said, "If a traveler stands directly in front of a traveler's palm and makes a wish in good spirit - that wish will definitely come true."
The traveler's palm tolerates sandy and clayey soils with good drainage, and thrives in rich, moist and loamy soils. It responds well to fertilizer and is considered a heavy feeder. Some growers feed their traveler's palm monthly with a light application of commercial tropical plant food or a plant food specifically formulated for palms. Alternatively, a slow release fertilizer (e.g., an 18-18-18) may be used during the summer growing season. This vigorous plant is considered very disease and pest resistant.
Light: The traveler's palm thrives and grows best in full sun but also grows well in part sun/shade. Small plants should be shaded until well established. The traveler's palm requires a lot of light, especially when grown indoors.
Moisture: Soils should be moist and have good drainage to yield optimal growth.
Hardiness: USDA Zones 10 - 11. Mature traveler's palms are considered cold hardy in frost-free locations. There are reports of enthusiasts successfully growing traveler's palms in USDA Zone 9, where they would need to be protected from the occasional frost.
Propagation: The traveler's palm may be propagated by seeds or by division and replanting of the attractive clumps (or suckers) formed at the base of the plant.
Traveller Palm and Red Traveller Palm Planted. June 15, 2010
I decided to try to plant one from seed. What I didn't know at the time was that a single seed could take months to sprout! So I shortly figured it was a dud and threw it away and moved on. After awhile my interest in plants sparked again and I decided to give it another go. This time I had researched as much as possible about how to germinate these tough little seeds and am now giving it another go. So the waiting game begins. When it will sprout is a mystery to me ( if it sprouts at all ) I am hoping with time, some TLC and a whole lot of patience it will :) The Photo on the left is the pots that I planted the seeds in :) I will be keeping a journal on them as time goes by and hopefully one day I'll be posting up pictures of the sprouts! :D
July, 18 2010
- Still no sign of growth yet from my Traveller Palm its been about a month. It has been said that they have very slow germination so I'm not expecting them to grace me with their presence anytime soon. However I have recently read somewhere that they needed bottom heat ( which I wasn't giving them for the first little while. After I read that I promptly put them outside and stopped babying them a little bit lol They are now sitting outside on the cement in triple digit weather lol if thats not considered enough bottom heat then I don't know what is!! I dunno, Hopefully the heat will help them grow. I think this will most likely be the most testing plants for me to grow because it takes so long for them to show me that they are in fact still alive lol ( remember... last time I threw the seeds out!!! ) I won't make the same mistake again :)
August 1, 2010
- Still waiting for a sprout. Absolutely nothing going on yet. I am really beginning to think I should have chipped the seed before planting them, as I have just done that with a few of my Dessert Cassia seeds and they started rooting within a couple of days. I'm kinda hoping that the traveler palm seeds will sprout before winter. Once the temperatures drop its going to be more difficult to keep the pot warm. Maybe I'll just have to put it up onto of the refrigerator ;p lol
August 14, 2010
Alright... so I should be down right ashamed of myself but I couldn't wait not knowing if these seeds would sprout or not for up to a year lol... sooooo... I ended up just "peaking" lol and ofcourse the seeds looked the exact same as when I put the darn things in lol! So I decided to try giving it a jumpstart by "chipping" the seeds a bit.. *shrug* either it will help it grow or kill it who knows. We shall see. :)