Book of Mediterranean Trees, Shrubs and Climbers


Livistona australis  Cabbage-tree palm
Family Arecaceae
Genus Livistona    
Species australis   southern
Properties palm
The cabbage-tree palm, Livistona australis, is in the Arecaceae family. It is a tall, slender palm growing up to about 25 m in height and 0.35 m diameter. It is crowned with dark, glossy green leaves on petioles 2 m long. It has leaves plaited like a fan; the cabbage of these is small but sweet. In summer it bears flower spikes with sprigs of cream-white flowers. In winter, the trees accumulate dead fronds or leaves, which usually need to be removed by a arborist. Seeking protection from the sun, early European settlers in Australia used fibre from the native palm to create the cabbage tree hat, a distinctive form of headwear during the colonial era.
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