Lipstick palm


Lipstick palm, or red sealing-wax palm, is native to Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. It reaches a height of 20 feet, with several ringed trunks up to 3 inches in diameter. The leaves are up to 5 feet long and are composed of many slender leaflets distributed in two rows, the base and the central shaft of the leaf are vivid reddish-orange. Inflorescences arise  below the lowest leaf and are up to 1.5 feet long. Ripe fruits are almost black, oval-shaped, up to half an inch long. It flowers and produces fruits irregularly during the year. The generic name means arched spike, in reference to the shape of the inflorescence. The species name means palm in a native language. It has recently become popular as an ornamental in Puerto Rico.

The photographed palm was planted in 2005 behind the Biology Building and is the only member of the species in the campus. There’s a small specimen in front of the Monzón Building.

Cyrtostachis renda (Arecaceae)