Chaemerops humulis setting seed

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Andrew in Germany
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Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2024 7:11 am
Location: Herzogenrath Germany
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Chaemerops humulis setting seed

Post by Andrew in Germany »

There is only one that is flowering in my area and always over the several years it’s been flowering, the flowers lead to nothing. But this year for the first time there are a number of seeds being produced. I always thought a second or in this case at least a male tree would be needed to generate seeds. But there isn’t one as far as I can gather. So what’s going on here.
This palm lives in this box outside all year long. I built it back in 2013 with a heating cable built in around the roots and gets turned on only when it’s getting too cold. I also put the whole thing on wheels so I can roll it in the winter close to our wall. It survives very well in this setup.
Here are some pics.
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Have I misunderstood the sexual orientation of Chaemerops, once again. Or is it just going for a party trick…
Paul S
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Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2019 4:24 pm
Location: SE Essex
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Re: Chaemerops humulis setting seed

Post by Paul S »

Plants, and palms particularly, are funny things. It is fairly common for a palm to partially or entirely change sex. Sometimes blank seeds are formed, sometimes viable ones. Usually it is temporary but sometimes not. One of my trachies does it from time to time - usually male but sometimes it produces a female inflorescence amonmgst the male ones. But not every year.

On one of my local walks through some scrubland there are two large, ancient clumps of Ruscus aculeatus. Both are male, except for one corner of one plant, which is female and will bear viable berries.

As to why it happens, your guess is as good as mine.
Andrew in Germany
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2024 7:11 am
Location: Herzogenrath Germany
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Re: Chaemerops humulis setting seed

Post by Andrew in Germany »

Interesting Paul thanks.

I always assumed this palm was male, but now there are seeds. So that means either it’s bisexual or there is a flowering male chaemerops somewhere nearby. I know there isn’t.

Or it was always female and gave up on the hopes of a man and did it herself! Pretty 😎
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