Named for the first chancellor of the German Empire, Prince Otto von Bismarck, the Bismarkia nobilis is a well known palm native to Madagascar. (Fun fact: this is one of the few cases where botanists have named a species after a politician.)
One of the most striking species of palm growing in the Merwin Palm Collection, it stands out because of it’s silvery fronds, which were often used for roofing and basketry by indigenous people. Trunks are 30 to 45 cm in diameter, slightly bulging at the base, and free of leaf bases in all but its youngest parts. In their natural habitat they can reach above 25 meters in height.
This genus is dioecious, which means there are separate male and female trees.
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