Martin Gibbons, c/o The Palm Centre
Chamaerops No. 1, published online 23-11-2002
on this article:
Click here to read them or to add your own.
The formation of the European Palm Society and the
publication of the first issue of its journal 'Chamaerops' is an
exciting event for its three founder members, and the culmination
of months of planning and hard work.
As interest in the study and cultivation of palms
spreads, there grows alongside it a thirst for knowledge which cannot
be satisfied by books alone, and it is hoped that this association
and its magazine will help to fill the gap.
Palm enthusiasts throughout the world are served,
and ably so, by the United States based International Palm Society,
and we in the cooler climate of Europe have additionally enjoyed
the benefits of membership of the 'Temperate Zone Chapter of that
organization, which dealt more specifically with cool and cold growing
palms. However, since its demise, many of us have been feeling at
a loss, and missing its quarterly 'PQ' magazine. Thus the idea of
the E.P.S. was born.
Over several meetings, the three of us decided to
launch the new society and to structure it so that it would appeal
not only to the dedicated palm grower but also to those whose interest
in exotic plants is wider than this. Those who are keen on Cycads,
Yuccas, Agaves, Cordylines, Tree ferns etc., groups of plants the
study of which is perhaps even more specific than with palms, should
not thereby feel left out.
However, it should not be imagined that the aims
of this new society are to cater only for those wishing to grow
palms in cool climates. It is, in every sense of the word, a "European"
society, and members from all over the continent: North, South,
East and West, are welcome. We hope to publish articles of interest
to palm lovers everywhere, hot, cold, and in between, from Sweden
to Sicily, from the U.K. to the U.S.S.R.
This editorial would not be complete without a large
debt of gratitude being paid to Mrs Tamar Myers, of Pennsylvania,
U.S.A., for 7 years the editor, producer, publisher and distributor
of "The Palm Quarterly" magazine referred to above. Her
many fans will be p leased to know that she will be writing a regular
column for Chamaerops ', beginning with this issue; she is not gone,
and certainly not forgotten!
It was tempting to compare her 'term of office'
with that of our ex-Prime Minister, Mrs Margaret Thatcher, especially
as they both resigned at about the same time, and both resignations
in a way signalled the end of an era. But, as they say, a week is
a long time in politics and by the time this is published the analogy
will probably be lost.
I think it is true to say that Tamar focussed attention,
perhaps for the first time, on temperate-growing palms, as an issue
separate from that general interest in palms, so closely associated
in most peoples' minds with the tropics, and holidays in the sun.
Indeed, the use of the palm tree as a symbol of all things tropical
is so common and widespread, that the public at large feel a certain
familiarity with the subject, even though they would probably be
surprised to learn that there are palms other than coconuts and
Most people are taken aback to learn that there
are nearly 3000 palms other than coconuts and dates, and frankly
incredulous when told that more than just a handful put up with
extreme cold, and will thrive, outside, in the ground, year round,
in all but the coldest and least hospitable areas of our continent.
With the help of even modest protection against
the worst of the winter weather, this number can certainly be increased,
and those keen enough, dedicated enough, or perhaps crazy enough
to go to more elaborate lengths have a great number of species from
which to choose. If warmth, even of only a few degrees, can be provided,
then the plant's hardiness to cold ceases to be an issue; attention
then can swing away from which species can stand the most cold,
or frost, or snow, and can focus instead on which palms will thrive
and grow well in our often less than-tropical summers. The list
However, if the idea of heating your garden fills
you with alarm, don't despair! With a little care in terms of choice
of species and a little common sense in terms of positioning, there
are several excellent and worthwhile palms to grow which need no
pampering at all.
With this and subsequent issues however, we hope
to cover the entire spectrum. From the Needle Palm (Rhapidophyllum
hystrix) - hardy down to around -20° centigrade, but oh so slow-growing
in all but the warmest areas - to the Washington Fan Palm (Washingtonia
filifera) which needs 'serious protection' in cold winters but grows
like a rocket in the summer, there is a palm for every climate,
every taste, every pocket, and every gardener, be he inventive and
resourceful, or faint-hearted and fatalistic.
Finally, thank you for joining the European Palm
Society - you are most welcome. Your comments and observations are
much appreciated, and it is hoped that this magazine will stimulate
correspondence and communication from and between its members. Letters,
articles and photographs will be gladly received; indeed the E.P.S.
and "Chamaerops" cannot function without them.
Now, as they say, read on...
Martin Gibbons - Editor
(No comments yet. Be the first to add a comment to
10-07-20 - 00:23GMT
|| What's New?
|| New palm book
| Date: 24-05-2004
of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft.
|| New: Issue 48
| Date: 24-05-2004
has been published in the Members Area.
|| Archive complete!
| Date: 03-12-2002
| All Chamaerops issues can now be found in the archive:
More than 350 articles are on-line!
|| Issues 13 to 16
| Date: 28-08-2002
| Chamaerops mags 13,
have been added to the members area. More than 250 articles are now online!
|| 42 as free pdf-file
| Date: 05-08-2002
Download! Chamaerops No. 42 can be downloaded for free to intruduce the new layout and size to
|| Issues 17 to 20
| Date: 23-07-2002
| Chamaerops mags 17,
have been added to the members area. Now 218 articles online!
|| Book List
| Date: 28-05-2001
a look at our brand new Book List edited by Carolyn Strudwick
|| New Book
| Date: 25-01-2001
by Mario Stähler
This german book tells you all about how to cultivate your palms in Central Europe. more...