A 30-million-year-old spiral palm crop was found

The fruit of the spiral palm is round or just like a cone, its elongated sword-shaped leaves are strong and fibrous, which is the reason for their main use in leaves: they are used to make hats, mattresses, roofs and ropes, although some are edible. Most of its species live in Malaysia and Madagascar. There are 15 species of these plants living in Australia today, but we didn’t know much about prehistoric times until now.

The International Journal of Plant Sciences However, a journal recently reported that an Australian research team had found the first crop of this plant species to date, the first Australian discovery, at a new paleontological site in Queensland. This finding reinforces the idea that the ancestor of this genus evolved in the Gondwana region.

Handicraft products from palm leaf.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The fossil was discovered by a local resident, Joe Bridgeman, in 2014 and then examined with the help of universities, museums, and botany experts. The new species identified after Bridgeman’s wife’s name, Estella a Pandanus estellae got a name. The crop was examined externally and internally by computer micro-imaging, and methods were used to verify that it was indeed an old snail crop.

Twisted palms produce very high yields today, some species reach 30 cm in height, but according to Australian fossils, the yield rose to a tenth of today’s living species only 30 million years ago. The researchers say this is important in understanding the change in crop size. Based on the characteristics of today’s huge crops So far it has been assumed They were spread by the sea, and the plant adapted this method of reproduction when it sprouted fruit. However, the petrified twisted palm fruits indicate that they were only able to spread for a very small distance.

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