Bactris herrerana Cascante, Palms 44: 148 (2000)

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (
Costa Ricapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)A


  • Along the central part and the south region of the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, and possibly extending to Panama. From 200-300 m in La Cangreja Protected Zone and Corcovado National Park, to 950-1000 m in the Fila Tinamaste in Perez Zeledon, San Jose. In "Tropical humid forest, transition to premontane", and in "Pluvial premontane forest" according to Holdridge's "Life Zones Classification" (Tosi 1969); or "Sub-tropical, Tropical, humid with three to four dry months," and "Tropical, tropical, humid with one to two dry months" according to Herrera and Gomez's "Biotic Units Classification" (1993). (Alfredo Cascante, Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica in 44(3). 2000)B


  • Bactris herrerana is related to B. glandulosa Oerst., and B. baileyana H.E. Moore, which have in common the numerous filiform rachillae (> 40) of the inflorescence. Floral morphology of B. glandulosa is very similar to B. herrerana, but the former has more rachillae (ca. 60-80+), and develops more numerous, smaller fruits than B. herrerana. This group of related species grows simpatrically in Costa Rica, however B. herrerana can be distinguished in natural conditions by its long simple leaves with the strongly bifid apex, contrary to pinnate leaves in the other two species.

    Some individuals of B. herrerana may seem to have pinnate leaves from a distance, but a close examination reveals that the leaf divisions do not follow a regular pattern, and are probably due to leaf age and effect of the wind.

    Flowering of B. herrerana occurs during the ending of the dry season and beginning of the rainy season (March to May). This phenological pattern is shared with B. glandulosa and B. baileyana along its distribution range in Costa Rica, and it may be in response to the climatic pattern of the region.

    In herbarium conditions the specimens of B. herrerana usually have leaf blades grayish above, and brownish underneath.
    (Alfredo Cascante, Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica in 44(3). 2000)B


  • Stems cespitose, 2.0-3.0 m tall, stems 3-6, 1.5-2.5 cm diam., internodes usually spiny. Leaves 4-6 (-11), sheaths to 24.0 cm long, covered with short black spines; petiole glabrous or shortly pubescent, (15-) 20-28 (-43) cm long, with black spines (0.5-) 2.5-3.6 (-5.7) cm long, the basal portion with more numerous, shorter spines. Lamina simple and deeply bifid (rarely irregularly divided), 0.8-1.2 m long, glabrous adaxially and the secondary veins prominent, abaxially with a short brownish pubescence, lobes 10.0-17.0 cm wide at apex of rachis, 35-45 cm long, spinulose margin. Rachis pubescent underneath, with or without black spines, (2.5-) 3.5-5.0 (-5.7) cm long. Inflorescence infrafoliar, peduncle 3.5-7.0 cm Iong, 5.0-7.0 mm wide, recurved in anthesis, covered with short spines especially on the basal portion, prophyll ca. 9.0 cm long, peduncular bract 12.0-18.0 cm long., spinulose, with short blackish-brown and yellowish spines; rachis 4.5-7.2 cm long, rachillae 31-45, 4.5-7.5 cm long, densely covered with glandular hairs. Staminate flowers grouped on the proximal part of the rachillae, pedicel 0.4-0.6 mm long, sepals fused at the base, lobes apiculate, ca. 1 mm long, glabrous; corolla Z.O-3.5 mm long, petals white-cream, glabrous, fused at the base and apically, thecae ca. 0.5-0.6 mm long., longitudinally dehiscent. Pistillate flowers sessile, cupular calyx, 1.0-3.0 mm long, glabrous or sub-glabrous, and striate (when dry); corolla forming a tube, 3.0-4.5 mm long, with brown ascendent trichomes outside, glabrous inside, style glabrous, to 4.0 mm long, stigma capitate. Fruits obovate with a prominent stigmatic residue, (0.9-) 1.0-1.2 (-1.5) cm diam., (0.7-) 1.1-1.3 (-1.5) cm long, red when ripe, glabrous, and striate; endocarp black, corolla conspicuous in the fruit, irregularly divided.
    (Alfredo Cascante, Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica in 44(3). 2000)B

Materials Examined

  • Costa Rica. San Jose: Perez Zeledon, San Cristobal, Finca Tinamaste (17 km from San Isidro on road to Dominical), remnant forest near Fila Tinamaste, 650-680 m, 9° 17' 54" N, 83° 46' 20" W, 2 December 1998. A. Cascante et aI. 1470 (Holotypus: CR; isotypi: MO, USJ). (Alfredo Cascante, Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica in 44(3). 2000)B
  • Costa Rica. Puntarenas: Golfito, Reserva Forestal Golfo Dulce, Estacion Aguabuena, ca. 5 km W of Rincon, Quebrada Aguabuena, 250 m, 7 June 1992, A. Henderson et al. 1819 (INB), 1824 (INB, MO), 1826 (INB); Golfito, Peninsula de Osa, Cerro Rincon, cabecera de los rios Tigre, and Rincon, 700 m, 7 May 1993, R. Aguilar 1885 (INB); Parrita, and Pirris- Damas rivers watershed, SW side of Cerro Cabeza de Chancho, 600 m, 1 May 1998, J.F. Morales 6425 (INB). San Jose: Acosta, Fila Bustamante, SE side of Fila Pital, ca. Quebrada Colorado, 180-600 m, 10 April 1997, J.F. Morales 6l75 (INB); Puriscal, Zona Protectora La Cangreja, forest near Rio Negro, ca. 1.5 km E of Santa Rosa de Puriscal, 320 m, 14 May 1987, M. Grayum et aI. 8310 (INB); Zona Protectora La Cangreja, Santa Rosa de Puriscal, primary forest on Fila La Cangreja, 500 m, 10 Setember 1992, J.F. Morales 637; Perez Zeledon, San Cristobal, Finca Tinamaste (17 km from San Isidro in road to Dominical), remnant forest near FilaT inamaste, 650-680m, 9° 17' 54" N - 83° 46' 20", 25 March 1998, O. Valverde 782 (CR, MO).
    (Alfredo Cascante, Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica in 44(3). 2000)B