Historical Palms at Jubilee Park

By Charlotte Simpson-Young and Asa Wahlquist

On the east side of Jubilee Oval is a striking formal avenue of 26 Canary Island Date Palms (Phoenix canariensis), or Phoenix Palms. It’s thought that they were planted in 1935. The Canary Island Palm was often used in early commemorative parklands and urban landscaping, particularly in the Inter-war Period between 1915 and 1940. The species was popular because of its drought tolerance and uniform and dramatic growth pattern.

Canary Island Palm at Jubilee Park (C. Simpson-Young)

Canary Island Palm at Jubilee Park (C. Simpson-Young)

The City of Sydney considers avenue to be “one of the most outstanding examples of civic planting using this species in the Sydney metropolitan area” and “has group significance at the City [and] Local Government Area level in terms of its commemorative, social, aesthetic and visual values”.

Since 1980 a number of palm plantings across Sydney have been killed by the (currently untreatable) soil fungal pathogen Fusarium wilt. This makes the Jubilee Park planting even more significant as plantings elsewhere (such as in Centennial Park) are lost. Sadly, Fusarium wilt has been found it at least one of the Jubilee Park palms, and the remainder are expected to eventually contract the disease.

Canary Island Palms at Jubilee Park (C. Simpson-Young)

Canary Island Palms at Jubilee Park (C. Simpson-Young)

For the original articles go to Asa Wahlquist’s website.

For more posts on the Glebe Foreshore:

Under the Terrace Houses: Glebe before European Settlement

Biodiversity in Urban Sydney: the Glebe Foreshore Walk

A Concrete Creek: Glebe’s Johnstons Creek

The Last Mangroves in the City: Jubilee Park Mangroves

Where the River Meets the Sea: Glebe’s Coastal Saltmarsh



Benson, D., Howell, J., (1995) Taken for Granted: The Bushland of Sydney and its Suburbs. Kangaroo Press.

Buckingham, J., (2008) Glebe’s waterfront History, the last 40 years <https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/offtrack/flowerpots-tackle-sydney-harbours-aquatic-housing-crisis/6148966>

Christie, Judy (2019) personal communication

City of Sydney (2006) East Glebe Foreshore Plan of Management <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/138756/GlebeForeshoreEastPoM_adopted.pdf>

City of Sydney (2016) Glebe Foreshore <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/vision/better-infrastructure/parks-and-playgrounds/completed-projects/glebe-foreshore>

City of Sydney (2014) Urban Ecology Strategic Action Plan <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/198821/2014-109885-Plan-Urban-Ecology-Strategic-Action-Plan_FINAL-_adopted.pdf>

City of Sydney (2019) Johnstons Creek <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/explore/facilities/parks/plans-of-management/johnston-creek-parklands>

City of Sydney (2013) Johnstons Creek Master Plan Report <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/154803/Johnstons-Creek-Parklands-Master-Plan-August-2013_Part-1_Vision-and-Analysis.pdf>

City of Sydney (2016) Avifauna Surveys: City of Sydney <https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/306651/Avifauna-survey-spring-2016autumn-2017.pdf>

City of Sydney (2019) The City of Sydney Significant Trees Register <https://trees.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au>

Department of Primary Industries (2019) Fishing in Sydney Harbour <https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/recreational/fishing-skills/fishing-in-sydney-harbour>

Eckstein, D., (2001) Inner City Environmental Revitalisation <https://ramin.com.au/annandale/wetlands.shtml>

Irish, P., Goward, P. (2013) Blackwattle Creek, Barani: Sydney’s Aboriginal History <https://www.sydneybarani.com.au/sites/blackwattle-creek/>

Larkum, T., (2007) The Mangrove plantings on Rozelle Bay, Glebe Society Bulletin <https://www.glebesociety.org.au/wp-content/uploads/bulletins/2007_03.pdf>

Larkum, T., (2017) Damage to Mangroves in the Mangrove Area of Bicentennial Park, Glebe Society Bulletin <https://www.glebesociety.org.au/wp-content/uploads/bulletins/2017_07.pdf>

Marsden S., Solling, M., (2016) Harold Park: A History. Mirvac Group Limited. Sydney

Montoya, D., (2015) Pollution in Sydney Harbour, NSW Parliamentary Research Service <https://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/researchpapers/Documents/pollution-in-sydney-harbour-sewage-toxic-chemica/Pollution%20in%20Sydney%20Harbour.pdf>

Schwartzkoff, L., (2018) Oyster Research Aims to Clean the Water of Sydney Harbour <https://sydney.edu.au/news-opinion/news/2018/09/27/oyster-research-aims-to-clean-the-water-of-sydney-harbour.html>

Solling, M. (2007) Grandeur and Grit, Halstead Press.

City of Sydney (2014) Significant Trees: Jubilee Park <https://trees.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/location/jubilee-park-inc-old-tram-terminus-group/

Royal Botanic Garden Sydney (2019) Fursarium Wilt of Palms <https://www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/Science/Plants/Pests-Diseases/Fusarium-Wilt-of-Palms>

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s