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Jubaea chilensis - trunk circumference 16-20 cm - total height 60+ cm - pot Ø 26 cm
Jubaea chilensis (circumference 16-20 cm)
Chilean wine palm
Pot: Ø 26 cm
Total height: 60+ cm
Probably the hardiest feather palm. This palm is from Chile. It is a massive palm when mature, up to 25 metres (75 feet) tall, with a grey trunk up to 1.3 metres (4 feet) wide. It has a large head of stiff feather leaves which are dull green on the top and greyish underneath. The seeds are known locally as `coquitos` or miniature coconuts where they are a delicacy.
Once covering vast areas of Chile in millions the palm was cut in huge numbers to harvest the sap from the trunks to make Chilean palm wine, each tree reportedly yielding 90 gallons. Today it is thought around 100,000 trees survive.
It is highly drought tolerant, and can take severe frost when established. It does not need hot summers to grow well. Mature palms in Montpellier France survived temperatures of -17C.