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The large, compound, evergreen fronds, which are arranged at the top of an unbranched stem, are what set most palms apart. However, palms can be found in nearly every habitat in their range, from rainforests to deserts, and exhibit a wide range of physical characteristics.

Palms are one of the most well-known and widely grown plant families. They have been significant to humans for a significant portion of history. Palms are the source of many common food and product ingredients. Palms are also used extensively in landscaping today. Palms were used as symbols of victory, peace, and fertility in many ancient cultures due to their significance as food.

Palms can grow in one of two ways, either as vines, tree-like shrubs, or vines. single or in groups. The typical illustration depicts a single shoot with a crown of leaves at its end. Members can exhibit this monopodial trait in a prostrate, trunkless, or trunk-forming manner. Washingtonia and Roystonea are two examples of common palms that can only grow in one location. Instead, palms might cluster together sparsely but densely.

A new shoot emerges from an axillary bud that grows on the trunk at a leaf node, typically near the base. A bud in the axilla is produced by the new shoot, which in turn produces a habit of clustering. Solely sympodial genera incorporate a considerable lot of the rattans, Guihaia, and Rhapis. There are a number of palm genus with both solitary and clustering species. Palms that typically grow singly can also form clusters, and vice versa. These aberrations suggest that only one gene is affected by the habit.