This week we harvested pollen from the last wild Hurricane Palm Dictyosperma album var. conjugatum on Round Island.
Warden Jo: "Two weeks ago Dr Phil Lambdon, the new Island Restoration Flora Officer, spotted male inflorescences on the tree. Male and female flowers of this species do not bloom at the same time to prevent self pollination. To preserve the genetic diversity of this rare variety Phil recommanded harvesting the pollen. We will preserve it and try to manually pollinate the female flowers when they will show up. Some pollen will be sent on the mainland to pollinate the trees found at Gerald Durrel Endemic Wildlife Sanctuary (GDEWS). These trees were planted from seeds collected on Round Island.
Several indidivuals have been planted on Round over the years but none has reach maturity yet. About 120 seedlings coming from seeds collected at GDEWS are currently slowly growing in our nursery and most of them will be ready to plant in 2020."