A new species of palm tree has been named in Fujairah, UAE, to coincide with the 4th International Date Palm Festival meeting in Abu Dhabi.
The tree has been named phoenix etisalatus.
While it belongs to the genus phoenix and looks very much like the ubiquitous date palm (phoenix dactylifera), this variety does not produce fruit. Furthermore, the leaves are not being used for making mats and baskets nor are there signs that the wood is being harvested for posts and furniture.
The main purpose of this new Emirati palm tree is to serve an aesthetic function—to beautify by hiding ugly telephone towers.
The etisalatus is extremely high (30m), erect and it usually stands alone. This variety is increasingly seen in built up urban areas of the UAE.
The leaves are pinnate, 3-5m long with the full span of the crown (umbrella) spreading about 8-10m. The absence of leaf fall makes this tree highly desirable for growing among city buildings.
It is difficult to distinguish the etisalatus from the dactylifera but this new variety possesses the distinctive 8cm spikes at regular intervals up and down the trunk thus making it ideal for climbing.
New Species of Tree Identified in the UAE, ETE, 21 March 2007.
This article is also posted on the Fujairah in Focus Facebook Page.
Image: “The tree has been named phoenix etisalatus.”
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Posted by Geoff Pound at 6:09 PM