Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 60.djvu/402

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POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

The ubussá (Manicaria saccifera) of the lower Amazons has a kind of frond found, I believe, in no other palm; its leaf in general outline is like that of a pinnate leaf—say like that of the coco or date palm—but, instead of being divided, like the pinnate frond, it is entire.

Most of the palms have the pinnate or feather-like leaves. There might seem to be but little opportunity for variation in such fronds, but the variation is really very great, although at first sight it is not striking. Perhaps the largest of the pinnate fronds are those of the

PSM V60 D402 A fan shaped palm of the lower amazons.png
Fig. 10. Œnocarpus disitichus, a Fan-shaped Palm of the Lower Amazons.

jupaty (Raphia tædigera (Fig. 11) which often have a length of 45 feet. It might not appeal to one but little familiar with palms, but it is a fact that the attitudes of the fronds and leaflets of a palm tree are thoroughly characteristic. The accompanying diagram (Fig 12) will give an idea of what is meant. The frond of a given species has a certain habit of hanging, and that habit is constant and characteristic of the species. There may be—there always is—some difference of attitude between the young leaves and the old ones, but even these differences are constant. Occasionally, however, one may be a little puzzled at the attitude of the fronds of a palm growing under unusual