The genus Phoenix (14 spp.) is one of the most emblematic genera in the palm family. The genus is pleonanthic, dioecious and it is composed of species with dwarf to large and massive growth form, solitary or multiple stems and pinnate leaves; inflorescences interfoliar.
It is distributed from the Atlantic islands through Africa, Crete, the Middle East and India to Honkong, Taiwan, Philippines, Sumatra and Malaya (Barrow, 1998; Dransfield, 2008); two species have been reported in tropical Africa. One species (P. atlantica A. Chev.) present in Cape Verde Island (Henderson et al., 2006).