Livistona mariae subsp. mariae
A tall palm reaching 25m in height with large fan-shaped leaves up to 2m in length. The fruit is round, glossy black and contains one seed. The trunk features dark grey rings. Seedlings of this palm have a distinct red colouring.
The population of this rare plant is comprised of less than 2,000 mature individuals and many juveniles mainly restricted to the Finke Gorge National Park (Palm Valley). They grow in the gorges and valleys of the Finke River and its tributary, Palm Creek, in the Krichauff Range south west of Alice Springs. It is the only palm species in Central Australia.
The persistence of this plant in the arid zone is dependent on availability of reliable groundwater which it currently receives in its habitat. Threats to this habitat include overcrowding by introduced grass species, fire, impact of tourism and stock, depletion of groundwater supply and climate change.
Where to find this plant at Alice Springs Desert Park
These plants are only displayed in the visitor centre courtyard.
Latz, P., 2004. Bushfires and Bushtucker, IAD Press, Alice Springs
Moore, P., 2005. A Guide to Plants of Inland Australia, Reed New Holland, Sydney