Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav., Syst. Veg. Fl. Peruv. Chil. : 299 (1798)

Primary tabs

http://media.e-taxonomy.eu/palmae/photos/palm_tc_155974_2.jpg

Distribution

Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (http://www.nhm.ac.uk/hosted_sites/tdwg/geogrphy.html)

Six species occurring in the Amazonian Basin in Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru, and along the northwest coast of Ecuador, Colombia and into Venezuela and Panama. (J. Dransfield & N. Uhl & C. Asmussen & W.J. Baker & M. Harley & C. Lewis, Genera Palmarum. The evolution and classification of palms. 2008)

Discussion

Diagnosis

Biology And Ecology

Etymology

Uses

Description

  • Moderate, solitary or clustered, unarmed, pleonanthic, dioecious palms. Stem robust or rarely rather slender, erect or procumbent, internodes short, covered with a mass of fibres and petiole bases, when bare marked by spiral, triangular, often pitted leaf scars. Leaves numerous or rarely few, erect, arching, evenly pinnate; marcescent; sheath tubular, sometimes with a large ligule opposite the petiole, becoming fibrous; petiole short, lacking, or rarely elongate, shallowly channelled adaxially, rounded abaxially, margins rounded or sharp; rachis triangular in section, with greyish brown scales abaxially, leaflets regularly arranged in one plane, or irregularly arranged and held in different planes to give the leaf a plumose appearance, subopposite, single-fold, pointed, often pinched in at the base, usually smaller basally and distally, glossy dark green adaxially, paler and duller beneath; tomentose abaxially along a conspicuous midrib, transverse veinlets conspicuous. Inflorescences interfoliar, staminate and pistillate dissimilar; staminate unbranched; peduncle short; prophyll short, tubular, 2-keeled laterally, broadly pointed, splitting apically; complete peduncular bracts 1, like the prophyll but longer, splitting abaxially, persistent above the inflorescence, subsequent peduncular bracts several (4–5), incomplete, spirally inserted below the flowers. Staminate flowers in groups of 4, sessile or with a conspicuous common stalk, usually lacking a subtending into sepals and petals at maturity (but see Uhl and Moore 1977b); stamens 36–900 or more, filaments erect, awl-shaped, anthers elongate, latrorse; pistillode lacking. Pollen ellipsoidal, usually with slight or, occasionally, with obvious asymmetry; aperture a distal sulcus; ectexine tectate, coarsely perforate, or perforate-rugulate, aperture margin slightly finer; infratectum columellate; longest axis 72–90 µm [3/7]. Pistillate inflorescence head-like; peduncle short, dorsiventrally flattened; prophyll and first peduncular bract as in the staminate, subsequent peduncular bracts numerous, larger than in the staminate, sometimes in series, elongate, pointed, ± covering the flowers. Pistillate flowers asymmetrical, each subtended by a pointed bract, spirally arranged, closely appressed; sepals 3 or more, triangular, ± elongate; petals 4–10, long, narrow, variously folded and wrinkled; staminodes numerous, 35 or more, like the stamens but irregular in size; gynoecium of 4–10 united carpels, ovarian part short, rounded, stigma long, narrow, cylindrical, styles as many as the carpels, long, narrow, conduplicately folded with stigmatoid tissue along the margins, ovules 1 per carpel, hemianatropous or anatropous. Fruit clusters, individual fruits ± rounded, 4–10-seeded, covered with large, woody, pointed warts, stylar remains terminal; epicarp woody, mesocarp fibrous, endocarp surrounding each seed bony or shell-like, bifacial adaxially with round basal projection, rounded abaxially. Seed ±kidney-shaped, basally or laterally attached, hilum round, median to basal, raphe branches numerous, laterally ascending and anastomosing; endosperm homogeneous, hard (vegetable ivory), embryo basal or lateral. Germination remote-ligular; eophyll pinnate. 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)

Anatomy

Fossil record

Relationships

Use Record

Uses

  • Palandra O.F.Cook: Hojas tiernas. Alimenticio. (Cerón, C.E., Etnobiología de los Cofanes de Dureno, provincia de Sucumbíos, Ecuador. 1995 (as Palandra O.F.Cook))
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: All parts of the tagua palm are utilizad -roots, stems, floral spathes, fruit, seeds, etc. (…). The roots are used as medicamentis in some sections, diuretic properties being attributed to them. They are also used in the preparation of drinks after boiling. The solid stem has a very hard exterior and because of this property is used, after being split longitudinally, in the laying of floors, in the same manner as "pambil" (Iriartea sp. ?) and "guadua" ,(…). The stems, cut into sections 30 to 40 centimeters long, are used in some parts of the Guayllanac section as seats, in the same way as "cabuya" and agave are used in the Provinces of Tungurahua and Cotopaxi. (…). The "cogollo" or "yema" (apical vegetative cone) is utilized under the name of "guagra changa" as food in salad, curry, etc., being first cooked for these purposes. (…). The leaves, large and pinnate, are used in the roofing and thatching of houses in the mountains, as well as in the villages. The long fibrous spathes, after removal of the inflorescence from within them, are fastened to handles and thus converted into very durable brooms. (…). The fibres of the spathes are also used in the making of strong and durable rope and cord suitable for use during the "winters" or rainy seasons. (…). The seeds are of course the most used part. When very young they are watery, and as they ripen they become progresively milky, curdy, viscous and gelatinous. In these different stages they are used as a drink which is somewhat sweet and as pleasing as or more so than coconut water (Cocos nucifera). (…). For comercial trade the seeds are converted into "shelled tagua" by removal de perisperm or "chocha", (…). (…). Since the beginning of its industrialization, tagua has been found suitable for the manufacture of buttons, and today that is its principal use. (Acosta-Solis, M., Tagua or vegetable ivory - a forest product of Ecuador. 1948 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Human FoodFoodSeedsNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    Utensils and ToolsRopeBractNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticBractNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    Human FoodFoodPalm heartNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    Medicinal and VeterinaryUrinary systemRootNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    CulturalCloth and accessoriesSeedsNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticStemNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    EnvironmentalAgroforestryEntire plantNot identifiedN/AEcuador
    ConstructionHousesStemNot identifiedN/AEcuador
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Fronds for roofing, edible fruit. Present in young fallows. (Denevan, W., and J.M. Treacy, Young managed Fallows at Brillo Nuevo. 1987 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    EnvironmentalAgroforestryEntire plantIndigenousBoraPeru
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafIndigenousBoraPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousBoraPeru
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: La fibra es muy buena para escoba de mano (japimuki) y el chipat de la "tunta" o depósito de virotes para la cerbatana. (Guallart, J.M., Nomenclatura Jibaro-Aguaruna de Palmeras en el Distrito de Cenepa.. 1968 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsHunting and fishingLeaf sheathIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticLeaf sheathIndigenousAguarunaPeru
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Leaves are used for thatch. Large seeds are edible and contain thick, chewy meat. Immature seeds provide drinking water in forest. (Vickers, W.T., and T. Plowman, Useful plants of the Siona and Secoya indians of Eastern Ecuador. 1984 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Human FoodFoodSeedsIndigenousSiona-SecoyaEcuador
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafIndigenousSiona-SecoyaEcuador
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Planta comestible recolectada. Parte comestible, fruto. (Chirif, A., Salud y nutrición en sociedades nativas. 1978 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Human FoodFoodEntire leafIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    EnvironmentalAgroforestryEntire plantIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Planta semi-cultivadas (protegidas). Parte comestible, hojas, frutos. (Chirif, A., Salud y nutrición en sociedades nativas. 1978 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodEntire leafIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    EnvironmentalAgroforestryEntire plantIndigenousAguarunaPeru
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Su empleo es sobre todo para techar las casas con sus hojas. Su fruto es comestible. Cuando madura se convierte en la tagua o marfil vegetal. (Guallart, J.M., Nomenclatura Jibaro-Aguaruna de Palmeras en el Distrito de Cenepa.. 1968 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsHunting and fishingLeaf sheathIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticLeaf sheathIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafIndigenousAguarunaPeru
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAguarunaPeru
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Uso alimenticio. Frutos. (…). En cambio, en el hábitat ribereno (…), y la palmera más comúnmente utilizada para la cubierta es chaapi (Phytelephas sp.) y accesoriamente kuuni (Wettinia maynensis). (…). En las regiones donde se desarrolla un comercio de trata (…). Estas especies son (…), la palmera kinchuk (Phytelephas sp.) cuyas fibras sirven para hacer escobas y la palmera kunkuk (Jessenia weberbaueri), cuyo fruto produce aceite. (…). Los proyectiles utilizados en la cerbatana son flechillas finas (…). Ellas son elaboradas con las nervaduras de las palmas de Kinchuk (Phytelephas sp.) e iniayua (Maximiliana regia). (Descola, P., La selva culta- Simbolismo y praxis en la ecología de los Achuar. 1989 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticLeaf sheathIndigenousAchuarEcuador
    ConstructionThatchEntire leafIndigenousAchuarEcuador
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousAchuarEcuador
  • Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.: Utilitarian. (Orejuela, J.E., Traditional productive systems of the Awa (Cuaiquer) indians of soutwestern Colombia and neighboring Ecuador. 1992 (as Phytelephas Ruiz & Pav.))
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticNot specifiedIndigenousAwáColombia

Bibliography

A. J. Dransfield & N. Uhl & C. Asmussen & W.J. Baker & M. Harley & C. Lewis, Genera Palmarum. The evolution and classification of palms. 2008
B. World Checklist of Arecaceae