Christmas Island Botanical Postage Stamps
Date of issue: 31 May 1978
Designer: V. Whiteley Studios
Printer: Harrison & Sons, London.
One of a loose series of stamps featuring 'Visitors' to Christmas Island
Plant: Arenga listeri
Christmas Island Palm, Lister's Palm
A single-stemmed palm tree, 10-20 m tall with pinnate leaves. The small flowers ripen to dense clusters of red ellipsoidal fleshy fruit, 13-17 mm long. The tree only flowers and fruits once in its lifetime, dying shortly afterwards.
Joseph Jackson Lister (1857-1927) was Senior Lecturer in Animal Morphology at St John's College, Cambridge.
During 1887 he served as volunteer naturalist on the surveying voyage of HMS Egeria to Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean, where he made valuable collections during the 10-day stay.