PALM TREE (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 – Agriculture)

News-CRUX-10     6th July 2024        
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Context: Odisha restricts palm tree cutting and aims to plant 1.9 million more to mitigate lightning strike casualties.

Palm Trees

  • About: It belong to the family Arecaceae, characterized by monocotyledonous flowering plants within the order Arecales.
  • Forms and Growth: These evergreen plants can grow as shrubs, trees, or long, woody vines known as lianas.
  • Distribution: America, Asia (from India to Japan and south to Australia), Africa, Madagascar, and the islands of the Pacific and Indian oceans.
  • Conservation Concerns: Despite the resilience of many species, approximately 100 palm species are endangered due to deforestation and unsustainable cultivation practices, such as harvesting the heart of palm, which cannot be regrown.
  • Economic Importance: Key commercial palm species include the coconut palm and the African oil palm (Elaeis guineensis), which are significant sources of vegetable oil and fat.
  • Rarity: The rarest palm tree known is the Hyophorbe amaricaulis, with only one surviving specimen located at the Botanic Gardens of Curepipe in Mauritius.

Palm Oil

  • About: It is also known as palm fruit oil. Palm oil is produced from the fruit of the oil palm tree (Scientific name: Elaeis guineensis).
  • Production: Indonesia> Malaysia - 84% of the worlds palm production.

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