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Howea

Howea

Howea or Kentia Palm is an unusual genus of only 2 species; H fosteriana and F. belmoreana, and are native to Lord Howe Island off the coast of NSW. Both species are very attractive palms and are highly sought after in Europe as an indoor plant, and their export makes up a large part of the island's economy. Howea or Kentias grow well in in the more temperate areas of Australia, particularly in moist, warm coastal areas well away from frost, and protected from hot winds. Howea can grow from 6 m up to 15m and H. belmoreana is by far the slower growing of the two. To the untrained eye they are hard to tell apart, H. fosteriana has a more up right habit with straighter fronds, where as the H. belmoreana fronds arch inwards towards a slightly thicker trunk. If grown away from direct sunlight in a protected area both varieties produce an attractive bright green trunk. Unlike most palms, the fronds of the Howea are not armed with thorns or spikes making them very popular for domestic gardens, parks and resorts.
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