Martin Gibbons, c/o The Palm Centre
By the time you read this, Christmas will be over
for another year, and 1998 will be upon us. Although January and
February often bring the coldest and consequently the most dangerous
weather for us palm enthusiasts, I always look forward to the turn
of the year because it seems that even after the first couple of
weeks the evenings are already getting lighter, there is a feeling
of coming out of the gloom instead of going into it and it seems
like just a matter of time before spring is here. Unfortunately
as soon as spring does arrive, I go into a tailspin of a panic in
the sure and certain knowledge that it will be over almost before
it's begun and before we know where we are it will be next Christmas.
So before we leave 1997 let's look buck at the various
events that made it such a great year for us palm people. Firstly,
and on a personal note, The Palm Centre moved location to its new
and much bigger site. The move took place in early April and the
precise details are best forgotten, though I do remember frantic
weeks of painting and decorating, unplanting and replanting, fixing
shelves and shade houses, polytunnels and planning permissions,
irrigation and invitations, and moving so many plants: Archontophoenix
and Zombia, Areca and Zalacca, Arenga and Zamia.
No sooner was the new nursery up and running but it
was time to leave for our Indian trip. Meeting 12 enthusiasts at
Heathrow and getting them hack there in one piece, with all those
flights, trips and visits, coach and bus tours, exotic meals with
exotic friends, in between was a challenge but a most enjoyable
one. Shortly after our breathless return Richard Darlow and friends
were off to Cornwall for what sounds like an equally enjoyable trip
to the southwest of England where they saw an unbelievable number
of exotic plants.
While this was going on the International Palm Society
held its midterm meeting in the U.K., beginning with a get-together
at The Palm Centre (in the pouring rain), and continuing over the
next few days with the more serious business of board meetings etc,
interspersed with trips to Kew, Leonardslee, Wisley etc., and rounded
off with a trip to the south of France where our brother-inpalms
Jacques organised more events.
With spring already a memory and summer well on its
way, another meeting of the EPS took place, this one in Germany,
at the famous Palmengarten in Frankfurt, in June. Well attended
by over 70 members, it included tours of the glasshouses and grounds,
as well as slide shows and talks. It seems it may become an annual
Our main meeting of the year was of course our get-together
in Spain, our fourth such gathering, the others having been at Kew,
the south of France, and Rome. Originally it had been considered
impossible to organise meetings for a group whose members were so
widely spread but where there's a will there's a way, and these
days it doesn't seem to be a barrier.
What other palmy events will 1997 be remembered for?
Well, for one thing, the new species Trachycarpus oreophilus from
Thailand, was published formally in the October issue of Principes,
the journal of the International Palm Society, and T. latisectus
likewise in the Edinburgh Journal of Botany. This completes the
8 species which we currently see as making up the genus.
Four issues of Chamaerops will have been published
and distributed, this being no 28, marking the end of our 7th year.
It's the year when our translators worked overtime to get the magazine
translated into French and German, so that many non-English speaking
members will no longer be at a disadvantage. Italian and Spanish
versions are still on the drawing board, watch this space!
Finally, the weather: a freaky and sometimes bitterly
cold winter, an unpredictable spring, with lots of sun but lots
of rain, finally working itself out into a long, hot summer, with
occasional torrential downpours. Perfect palm weather! All in all,
not a bad year for palm lovers everywhere.
So, with fond memories of '97, may I wish you all
the happiest of Happy New Years, and all the best for '98. Martin
27-09-21 - 14:10GMT
|| 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...