Fiji fan palm


Fiji fan palm is native to Tonga and perhaps Fiji, in the Pacific Ocean. It reaches a height of 30 feet, with a smooth trunk up to 1 foot in diameter. The leaves are up to 5 feet wide and split toward the end into many rigid segments. Inflorescences arise among the leaves and are about 3 feet long, with the flowers and later the fruits grouped at the end. Ripe fruits are red, turning black before falling, and measure about half an inch in diameter. It flowers and produces fruits throughout the year. The generic name honors William T. Pritchard, British consul to the Fiji Islands in the mid-19th century. The species name refers to its geographic origin.

The photographed palms are at the Natatorium sports complex. There are several other specimens in the campus; for example, behind the Piñero Building, southeast of the Sánchez Hidalgo Building, near the main entrance to the campus, in the garden across from the Monzón Building, and in front of the de Diego Building parking lot.

Pritchardia pacifica (Arecaceae)