Well, that’s what they say. Here:
Hans Lambers at the University of Western Australia in Crawley, who studies the way plant species have adapted to incredibly low phosphorus levels in soil in south-western Australia, says the nutrient-channelling leaves of the coco de mer are an “entirely different strategy”.
The discovery is linked to another remarkable thing about the palm: it seems to be unique in the plant kingdom in caring for the seedlings after they germinate.
But the researchers found that the seedlings benefit from growing in the shadow of the parent, because they have access to the more nutritious soil there.
“This is exactly what fascinated my colleagues and me most about Lodoicea,” says Kaiser-Bunbury. “We do not know of another [plant] species that does this.” More.