Livistona chinensis (Jacq.) R. Br. ex Mart.
This plant is an endemic species of Ogasawara Islands (Ogasawara village Tokyo) which lie 1000km south of Tokyo and are sub-tropical islands.   It is widely distributed in the Ogasawara Islands, from the base of the mountains near the sea shore to near the summits.
It can grow 5 to 10m, sometimes 15m in height and 40 to 60cm in diameter.   It has ring patterns which are marks from the leaf stems falling off.   With age, the patterns disappear and vertical cracks appear.
The leaf has a long stem and is smaller than Chusan Palm (Livistona chinensis), and has a 90 to 120cm diameter.   The stem is about 150cm in length and has a trianglar cross section.   At the base of the stem, it has spines in 2 rows which bend back to the base of the stem.   Leaves are partite and palmate, and furthermore each tip is bifarious and droops.
Around May, it extends a panicle where very small yellowish white flowers bloom.   The flower's sepals only open a little.  The bat, Pteropus pselaphon likes this flower.
The fruit is an oval stone fruit and ripens to deep green.  It has less flesh and is very hard.  The seed is light brown.
In the past, on the Islands, the leaf was used for a roof and the stem was used as a long handle of a harpoon fishing called tsukinbo.   Even today its leaves are used as a roof of a rest house or a grass skirt of the south sea dance.   Its appearance resembles Chusan Palm (Livistona chinensis) and it is commonly called Chusan Palm.   However, Chusan Palm belongs to the genus Livistona and is a different species.
Classification Arecaceae Livistona
Scientific name Livistona chinensis (Jacq.) R. Br. ex Mart.
(syn. Livistona chinensis var. boninensis Becc.)
Japanese name Ogasawara-biro
English name ---
Native locality Ogasawara Islands (Ogasawara village Tokyo)
Ecological description Evergreen tree
RDB ---
Planting place Central Palm Greenhouse
ogasawara-biro01 ogasawara-biro02
ogasawara-biro03 ogasawara-biro04