15 November 2009

Pandanus utilis - a Lily Called Screw Pine

A Screw Pine is not a pine at all.
The common screw pine or Pandanus utilis (and lemurs) are native to Madagascar. They are actually monocots, related to palms, orchids and grass.

Iowa State University also says that each flower results in a drupe - a seed surrounded by flesh like an olive or a cherry.

Tropical Plants Online in Ft. Lauderdale FL, sells the plants and suggests that they be used as specimen plants since they grow so large - 25 feet tall.



Rare Seed Source sells the seeds. The plant is hardy in zone 9 - down to 26 degrees-F and can grow in full sun or light shade. Needs sandy soil for fast draining.



I wouldn't use someone else's photos so you must click over to this blog - Exploring The World's Tree Species tree blog. A couple of the Screw Pine photos are spectacular.

The tree's roots grow above the soil line.
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Florida has a Pandanus Primer page devoted to Screw Pines.

Quoting from the Pandanus Primer -
"Sadly, many of the world's Pandanus are threatened in the wild. " ... "Pandanus is a remarkable genus of plants to which the modern world has not always been kind. It deserves better. So the next time you find yourself by Pandanus Lake, take a moment to appreciate the plants that lend their name to that lake. Pay your respects, make amends, or simply get to know these amazing plants."



The tree in my photos is at the Gaylord Resort in Grapevine Texas. My friend Anita and I drove to Dallas for a Master Gardener workshop at the Dallas Arboretum.

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