Roystonea stellata León, Mem. Soc. Cub. Hist. Nat. ''Felipe Poey'' 17: 11 (1943)

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Distribution

Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (http://www.nhm.ac.uk/hosted_sites/tdwg/geogrphy.html)
Cubapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Endemic to the Yagruma terrace of the Maisí region of Guantánamo, eastern Cuba, but possibly extinct (Zona, 199 1). Regrettably, this species has not been re-collected despite searches of the type locality (Zona, 1991). Apparently it is not cultivated, even in Cuba. Aditional surveys of the type locality and interviews with local people are urgently needed in order to ascertain whether this palm still exists. If surviving individuals can be found, every effort should be made to preserve this distinctive taxon. The one collection of this species available to me
does not permit the formulation of a complete and accurate description. Clearly, the star-shaped stigmatic scar marks this species as distinct from any other; however, its relationships to the other species in Roystonea are obscure. (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Common Name

  • Palma blanca (León, 1943). (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Description

  • Trunk gray-white, to 15 m tall.
    Leaves not seen; middle leaf segments 85-90 cm long and 4-4.8 cm wide.
    Inflorescence ca. 95 cm long; prophyll to 66 cm long; peduncular bract ca. 1.2 m long, apex acuminate; rachillae 23- 27 cm long and 1.5 mm diam. Staminate flowers white; sepals triangular, ca. 1 mm long; petals ovate to oblong; stamens as long as petals; filaments awl-shaped, 4 mm long; anthers 2 mm long; pistillode minute. Pistillate flowers white, ca. 3.5 per cm; sepals reniform, 1-1.5 mm long and 2.5 mm wide; petals ovate, 3.5 mm long; staminode deeply 6-lobed, 3 mm long, free for 1.4 mm.
    Fruits ellipsoid, 9.8-10.5 mm long, 8. 1-8.5 mm dorsiventral thickness, and 8. 1-8.7 mm wide; epicarp black, stigmatic scar stellate and 6-pointed; endocarp spheroid to ellipsoid, 8.4-9 mm long, 6.6-0.8 mm dorsiventral thickness, and 6.2-0.8 mm wide; seed dorsiventrally compressed spheroid, 6.1-0.5 mm long, 3.9-4.6 mm dorsiventral thickness, and 5.2-5.8 mm wide; raphe circular. Eophyll not seen. (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Bibliography

A. Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.
B. World Checklist of Arecaceae