Palmate Type 2: "Shovel"

The rachis extends into the leaf part-way


In this group the rachis continues beyond the border of the leaf into the fan but does not extend entirely through the leaf to the end. It is similar to the way the handle of many shovels extends down into the metal blade, past the top edge where you place your foot. When the rachis enters the leaf it is then properly called the back of the hastula.

Depending on the species and the size of the mature leaf the hastula back will intrude into the leaf from 1½ inches to 14 inches. The average is 6 to 7 inches. This construction causes the fan to undulate and twist.

Brahea armata and Bismarckia noblis have the longest intrusions, and Brahea moorei and decumbens sport the shortest. The easiest way to measure is from the back of the leaf as indicated in the drawing.

Brahea aculeata leaf (back)
Bismarckia noblis

Bismarckia noblis
This palm has similarities to Brahea armata, but has no thorns

Livistona Eungella Range

Livistona Eungella Range
Dangerous thorns

Similar Genera: Acoelorraphe wrightii, Bismarckia, Brahea, Livistona, Washingtonia

Next Steps

Browse other palmate types, go to the trunks section, go to the thorns section, go to the ligule section, go to the hastula section, or start over.