Recommendations for Maintaining Postharvest Quality
Produce Facts in English > Emerald Palm
Michael S. Reid
Department of Plant Sciences, University of California, Davis
Chamaedorea spp. Chamaedorea is a small-leaved member of the palm family with leaves that perform well in the vase. Three other members of the palm family (coconut, date-palm, and oil-palm) make up the commercially important species for food consumption in North America.
Chamaedorea palms are harvested in the wild as well as being produced in plantations. Fronds are harvested when fully expanded, mature, and dark green. Fronds of Chamaedorea should be dark green, clean, and uniform. Avoid fronds whose leaf tips showing marginal necrosis or dead areas and fronds that are beginning to turn yellow.
Grading and Bunching
There are no formal grade standards for Chamaedorea, but uniformity, size, color, and absence of defects are important criteria of quality. Bunches of Emerald palm contain 25 stems.
Exposure to ethylene has no deleterious effects on Chamaedorea fronds.
No pretreatments are recommended for Chamaedorea fronds.
Because Chamaedorea is a tropical foliage, it is sensitive to chilling damage if stored at low temperatures for extended periods. Fronds may be stored for 1 to 2 weeks at 12.5°C and high humidity.
Fronds are packed densely, usually without sleeves of paper, in standard horizontal fiberboard boxes.
Early death of the fronds, drying, and inrolling of the individual leaves (pinnae) is the result of water stress: make sure stems are recut before arranging them as this can quadruple their life. The species is chill sensitive, so hold at proper temperatures.
First published on this website: October 2004