ABOVE: Blue circle: Juvenile oil palm, Yellow circle: Young Ficus parietalis, Red circle: Ficus heteropleura fruiting. The article below illustrates the fruiting Ficus heteropleura.
Oil palms fruit almost continuously throughout the year and the fruit bunches need to be harvested every two weeks. To get at the fruit bunch the harvester used a saw on a long pole to cut away the large leaves blocking access to the base of the fruit bunch.
Unlike coconut plans where old leaves fall off naturally leaving a “clean”, smooth, trunk the oil palm leaf bases are “persistent” and may remain on the trunk for many years.
These persistent leaf bases are the perfect growing site for numerous epiphytes. There are at least 6 different epiphytes growing on the oil palm above including two species of figs, numerous ferns and a juvenile oil palm !