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Photo Credit: wikimedia commons

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Photo Credit: Kim and Forest Starr

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QUICK FACTS

  • HPRWA SCORE -4
  • SYNONYMS
  • ELEVATION RANGE Low|Mid
  • FAMILY Arecaceae
  • PLANT TYPE Large tree
  • WATER REQUIRMENTS Requires regular water
  • SOIL REQUIRMENTS Loam
  • SUN EXPOSURE Full sun to Partial sun
  • SALT TOLERANCE None
  • DRAINAGE REQUIRED Requires good drainage
  • PROPAGATION METHODS Seeds

Areca catechu
(betel nut palm )

The aboriginal origin of the betel nut tree is unknown due to its long history of cultivation. Grown primarily for the narcotic effects seeds provide when chewed, the addictive qualities ensure a long future of cultivation. First introduced to Hawai’i by Dr.Hillebrand in the late 1800’s, the betel nut is a good palm to grow in small areas. It grows into a medium-sized slender specimen up to 65 feet tall that takes up little space. The spirally arranged green fronds appear feathery form above a green crownshaft. White colored racemes have a sweet scent and appear below the crown shaft. It can be grown in a container inside if given enough light, however, it’s unlikely to produce seed in these conditions. The palm does best in full sunlight but will still thrive in part shade conditions. For robust growth, it requires well-drained soil with plenty of moisture. Germination takes 2 to 3 months; allow fresh fruit to open, clean the seeds and sow in moist soil.

Plant Uses

  • Specimen
  • Container plant
  • Ornamental
  • Medicinal
  • Cultural significance
  • Fragrant
  • Edible
  • Indoor plant

Dangers

None