Rhapis

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Rhapis
Rhapis humilis1.jpg
Rhapis humilis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Arecales
Family: Arecaceae
Subfamily: Coryphoideae
Tribe: Corypheae
Genus: Rhapis
L.f. ex Aiton
Species

See text

Rhapis is a genus of about 10 species of small palms native to southeastern Asia from southern Japan and southern China south to Thailand. The species are commonly known as Lady Palms. They are fan palms (Corypheae tribe), with the leaves with a bare petiole terminating in a rounded fan of numerous leaflets. The plants have thin stems growing to 3–4 m tall, branching at the base, forming clumps and are dioecious, with male and female flowers produced on separate plants. Rhapis is closely related to the Maxburretia and Guihaia genera and with them form a taxon within Thrinacinae represented by carpel specialization.

Selected species

Cultivation and uses[edit]

Several species are cultivated as ornamental plants, of which Rhapis excelsa is the most common. R. excelsa and some other species are relatively cold tolerant and can be grown outdoors in subtropical or warm temperate climates. Rhapis excelsa was listed by NASA as one of the best plants for removing toxins from the air.[1]

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