THE WAX PALMS (genus Ceroxylon):
1. The "Quindio wax palm", Colombia´s national tree at El Refugio
The Quindio wax palm (Ceroxylon quindiuense) is considered the national tree of Colombia. It is naturally distributed in the three Colombian cordilleras, and it grows usually above 2400 m alt. (7900 ft). Old wax palms can become very tall, up to 60 m tall (200 ft) -they are considered the tallest palms in the world-.
Here, a 35 year-old wax palm growing at the garden of El Refugio. It is approximately 25 meter (82 ft) tall, and it hasn´t flowered, yet.
2. Another species of Ceroxylon at El Refugio is the "wax palm of the coffee groves"
The wax palm of the coffee groves (Ceroxylon alpinum) usually grows between 1700 and 2300 m alt. In comparison with it the latter, this species is hardier and can grow faster. Here, two mature, 23-year-old, female individuals of Ceroxylon alpinum plenty of seeds at El Refugio. All species of wax palms are dioecious (in other words: there are either male or female plants).