Growing the Nipa palm

Nuts of the nipa palm (Nypa fruticans) are regularly found on our beaches, especially on the southern and eastern coasts. The plant is actually native to coastal areas bordering the Pacific and the Indian Ocean, but has been introduced to coastal areas in Nigeria (which is presumably where the seeds found in T&T originate). Nipa nuts collected in T&T were successfully germinated and grown by Peter Bacon in 1998.

As an experiment, I tried to grow a few germinated nuts collected from Gran Chemin in 2020.

Nipa palm nuts collected in 2020

The plants have survived and seem to be doing well to date.

Specimen of Nipa palm which continues to grow well as at July 2021

Naturalists should keep an eye out for naturalised stands of these palms in muddy brackish areas along our coasts.

Author: Kris Sookdeo