Other Varieties: The blue-stem dwarf palmetto is a native of north and
central Florida. It has little or no trunk. Each leaf, large and fan-shaped, grows
at the end of a long straight stem. The stems grow out of a stump or cluster.
The plant, with its dark leaves, is found in moist or marshy places where it is
familiar to all woodsmen. The sabal minor, or dwarf palmetto, inhabits the
coastal plains from North Carolina to Texas.
The James palmetto grows in the hammocks of South Florida, in the
Everglades and on the bays. It is somewhat similar to the blue-stem palmetto,
except that the leaves are not so markedly serrate.
The serub palmetto, sometimes known as the saw cabbage palm, is a
variety of the blue-stem or dwarf palmetto. It grows in the extreme southern
portion of the peninsula in swamps and undrained soils of the mainland. It has
a slender trunk, growing in clumps as high as forty feet, with fan-shaped
leaves. The stem is so spiral that it is sometimes known as the corkscrew palm.
The bud is eaten like that of the cabbage palm. The saw cabbage is also known
as the Cuban palm. It frequents hammocks and low savannas in the Big
Cypress and Everglades section of south Florida. The maturing red fruit
suggests tongues of flame.
The hog cabbage or buccaneer palm, found also on the keys and extreme
southern portion of the State, is a small, spreading tree with feathery leaves, or
plumes, attaining a maximum height of about 25 feet. It is distinguishable by a
trunk bulging at the base, encircled by ridges left by fallen leafstalks.