Roystonea princeps (Becc.) Burret, Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 63: 76 (1929)

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Distribution

Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (http://www.nhm.ac.uk/hosted_sites/tdwg/geogrphy.html)
Jamaicapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
This species is locally abundant in the Great Morass region of western Jamaica, in the vicinities of Black River and Negril. (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Discussion

  • The broadly lanceolate, long stipitate eophylls of R. princeps are unique in the genus and readily distinguish this species from all others. The unopened peduncular bract is very narrow, widest at the middle, and its tip extends among the petioles of the crown leaves. Also, the lax, airy inflorescence, which is totally unlike any other inflorescence in the genus, is a useful field character for this species. The flower parts of this species are among the smallest in the genus but are poorly known. In fact, the above description of the staminate flowers was drawn from only one collection. (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Common Name

  • Morass cabbage palm, Morass royal palm. (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Description

  • Trunk gray-white, to 20 m tall, 27.5-42 cm diam.
    Leaves ca. 15, lowest leaves hanging below the horizontal; crownshaft ca. 1.8 m long; rachis ca. 4 m long; middle segments 75-78.5 cm long and 4.3- 5.9 cm wide.
    Inflorescence ca. 1.3 m long and 1 m wide, appearing diffuse and open; prophyll not seen; peduncular bract ca. 1.8 m long and 21 cm wide, widest at the middle, apex caudate; rachillae 29-34.5 cm long and 1.1-2 mm diam., lax. Staminate flowers white; sepals triangular, ca. 0.4 mm long and 0.7 mm wide; petals elliptical to linear, ca. 3.4 mm long and 1.8 mm wide; stamens 6, ca. 3.1 mm long; filaments awl-shaped, ca. 2.4 mm long; anthers ca. 2 mm long, purplish; pistillode minute. Pistillate flowers white, 2-3.5 per cm; sepals reniform, 0.8-1 mm long and 2.5-3.1 mm wide; petals ovate, 2.5-2.9 mm long; staminode 6-lobed, 1.7-2.2 mm long, free for 0.6-0.7 mm; gynoecium 1.7-2.6 mm long and 1.7-2.1 mm diam.
    Fruits ellipsoid to obovoid, gibbous, 12.2-16.7 mm long, 8.7-11.7 mm dorsi ventral thickness, and 8.4-10.4 mm wide; epicarp purplish black, stigmatic scar plain; endocarp ellipsoid, 10.4-13.5 mm long, 6.8-1l.1 mm dorsiventral thickness, and 6.2-7.6 mm wide; seed ellipsoid, 9.7-11.5 mm long, 5.5-6.7 mm dorsiventral thickness, and 5.7-6.7 mm wide; raphe circular. Eophyll lanceolate, 15-19 cm long and 2- 2.7 cm wide, stipitate, short costate. n = 18 (Read, 1966). (Zona, S. 1996. Roystonea.(Arecaceae: Arecoideae). Flora Neotropica Monograph 71, 1-35.)A

Materials Examined

  • JAMAICA. HANOVER: Bloody Bay, Read 1701 (UWI).
    ST, ELIZABETH: Middle Quarters, between Black River and Lacovia, Britton 1637 (NY), Proctor 18453 (IJ), Zona & Salzman 454 (FLAS, RSA).
    WEST-MORLAND: Vicinity of Negril, Britton & Hollick 2100 (NY); Negril, Zona & Salzman 456 (FLAS, RSA); Cave, Read 1570 (FTG, UWI). (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