Cocos Weddlliana

Cocos Weddlliana, according to the 1917 edition of The Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture, is cultivated for ornament. Many confuse it with ferns and other tropical houseplants. They are slow growers, often sold by nurseries when they are 12 to 15 inches tall. But, these ornamentals were identified as members of the coconut tree family.

Like so many of the vintage botanical illustrations I work with, this plant has been since reclassified. It is a relative of the coconut tree but has been renamed Lytocaryum weddellianum. It produces small, edible fruits that taste like coconut.

Sadly, its desirability as a houseplant may be the only thing that keeps this Brazilian native from extinction. Deforestation is leading to these palms becoming more and more rare in the wild.

Cocos Weddlliana

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