Acoelorrhaphe H.Wendl., Bot. Zeitung (Berlin) 37: 148 (1879)

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (

Northern America: Mexico (Mexico Gulf present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Mexico Southeast present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B); Southeastern U.S.A. (Florida present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B) Southern America: Caribbean (Bahamas present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Cuba present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B); Central America (Belize present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Costa Rica present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Guatemala present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Honduras present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B, Nicaragua present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B); Western South America (Colombia present (World Checklist of Arecaceae )B)
One species in southern Florida,the West Indies, and parts of the Caribbean coast of CentralAmerica. (J. Dransfield & N. Uhl & C. Asmussen & W.J. Baker & M. Harley & C. Lewis, Genera Palmarum. The evolution and classification of palms. 2008)A





  • Moderate, armed, clustered, pleonanthic, hermaphroditic palm. Stem slender, erect, clothed with persistent leaf sheaths and petiole bases, older stems naked below, internodes very short. Leaves rather small, induplicate, very briefly costapalmate; sheath disintegrating into an interwoven mass of coarse, rich brown fibres; petiole moderate, slightly channelled or flattened adaxially, rounded abaxially, fiercely armed with robust, triangular, reflexed or inflexed spines, adaxial hastula conspicuous, irregularly lobed, abaxial hastula a low ridge; blade nearly orbicular, relatively flat regularly divided to below the middle into narrow, single-fold, deeply bifid, stiff segments, usually silvery abaxially due to small scales, midribs prominent abaxially, transverse veinlets conspicuous. Inflorescences slender, solitary, interfoliar, exceeding the leaves, branched to 4 orders; peduncle slender, elongate, elliptical in cross-section, usually erect; prophyll short, partly to completely enclosed by the leaf sheaths, tubular, 2-keeled laterally, splitting apically into short, irregular lobes; peduncular bracts 2, like the prophyll but much longer and more shallowly keeled; rachis about as long as the peduncle, ± glabrous, completely sheathed by tubular bracts, other branches densely tomentose; rachis bracts like the peduncular bract but smaller and decreasing in size distally; first-order branches bearing a 2-keeled membranous prophyll ± included within the primary bract; subsequent bracts very inconspicuous, triangular, membranous; rachillae slender, bearing spirally arranged, minute bracts each subtending a low spur bearing a cluster (cincinnus) of (1)–2–3 flowers, each flower subtended by a small thin bract. Flowers cream-coloured; sepals 3, fleshy and slightly connate basally; petals 3, united in a basal tube for 1/4 their length; stamens 6, borne at the mouth of corolla tube, filaments connate in a shallow cup at the base, free portions abruptly narrowed to a filiform apex, not inflexed in bud; anthers dorsifixed, short, rounded, versatile at anthesis, latrorse; gynoecium of 3 glabrous, follicular carpels, connate in stylar regions, ovule basal, erect, anatropous. Pollen ellipsoidal, with slight to obvious asymmetry; aperture a distal sulcus; ectexine tectate, finely perforate, perforate, micro-channelled, and slightly rugulate, aperture margin slightly finer; infratectum columellate, longest axis 29–33 µm [1/1]. Fruit small, rounded, developing from 1 carpel, black, stigmatic scar apical, abortive carpels basal; epicarp smooth, mesocarp thinly fleshy with prominent longitudinal fibres, endocarp thin, crustaceous. Seed with basal hilum, endosperm homogeneous penetrated by a thin intrusion of the seed coat at one side; embryo lateral near base on the antirapheal side. Germination remote-ligular (Chavez 2003); eophyll simple, narrow, lanceolate. Cytology: 2n = 36. (J. Dransfield & N. Uhl & C. Asmussen & W.J. Baker & M. Harley & C. Lewis, Genera Palmarum. The evolution and classification of palms. 2008)A