True to its name, the Palm Tree Polyps C. viridis has tentacles that actually look like palm fronds. Each tentacle is surrounded by a feathery structure or pinnule. Their colors can be tan and at times have a yellow and/or green color to the middle of the tentacles. Some other common names the Palm Tree Polyps are known for are Clove Polyps, Palm Tree Polyps and Fern Polyps.
The Palm Tree Polyps is just one of the Clove Polyps in this intriguing Genus. These encrusting mat-like corals form flat, unlayered connecting stolons in a mesh-like structure which contains the polyps. These mats can be pale brown, gray, or tan in color. Their polyps are housed in tubular calyces that are .5 to 2" tall (1 to 5 cm), depending on the species. They have 8 tentacles and come in a variety of colors such as green, purple, yellow, white, brown, pinkish cream, or cream with centers that can also be contrasting colors. The polyps can retreat completely into the base of their individual calyx.
Most Clavularia species have tentacles with long feathery pinnules, or side branches, that can be very lush. They can also look like a solid "feather" with stiffer "plumes". All species have tentacles of varying length and some species have a more tubular or thick tentacle. With the wide variety of texture and color, the Clavularia corals can make a wonderful collection worth pursuing for an attractive reef aquarium.