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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

Main | Family List (MO) | Family List (INBio) | Cutting Edge
Draft Treatments | Guidelines | Checklist | Citing | Editors

Draft Treatments

ARECACEAE
By M. H. Grayum
English, final draft: placed 1/Apr./2000

Chamaedorea
PACAYA

Stems obsolete to erect, slender or (rarely) subarborescent, solitary or (C. costaricana) cespitose, unarmed. Petioles unarmed, sometimes with conspicuous, yellowish, abaxial stripe, the sheath splitting or closed, sometimes (C. costaricana, C. graminifolia) forming brief crownshaft, rarely (C. costaricana) with distal, ligule-like structure. Lf.-blades simple and bifid to pinnately compound, the lflts. few to numerous, subequal or the terminal much larger, straight or ± sigmoid, regularly spaced and arranged in a single plane (ours), glabrous. Plants dioecious, the infls. unisexual, inter- or infrafoliar. Prophyll with tapering, bifid tip. Peduncle short to elongate, usually becoming orange to red in frt., with 1--several elongate, apically bifid, persistent to deciduous bracts. Infls. spicate to racemosely or subpaniculately branched, the axes usually becoming orange to red in frt. Fls. unisexual, small, sessile or ± immersed, spirally arranged (ours), ebracteate. Male fls. with 3 ± distinct sepals and 3 distinct to connate (distally and/or basally) petals; stamens 6. Female fls. with 3 ± distinct sepals and 3 [basally connate] petals; staminodia absent or toothlike; pistil 1, 3-locular; style lacking or short; stigmas 3, small, recurved. Ripe frts. smooth to verrucose-echinulate (C. crucensis), globose to obovoid or ellipsoid, orange to red or (usually) dark purplish or black, with basal stigmatic residue. Ca. 95 spp., NE Mex. (N. L., Tam.) to Venez., Braz., Bol.

Chamaedorea is unique, among palm genera occurring in Costa Rica, in being dioecious. This, however, is not a character of practical utility either in the herbarium or in the field. Most spp. are relatively nondescript, but can usually be recognized by the combination of small size (always < 10 m tall), solitary (except C. costaricana), green stems, spineless and otherwise glabrous foliage, ± numerous, papery, apically bifid peduncular bracts, and ebracteate fls. Some spp. have a yellowish abaxial stripe on the petiole and lf.-rachis, which is diagnostic, and spp. with pinnately compound lvs. usually have ± sigmoid pinnae. Typically, the infl. axes become bright orange in frt. The most similar and most closely related genus is Synechanthus (which see), though Chamaedorea spp. with simple lvs. are apt to be confused with Calyptrogyne or some Geonoma or Reinhardtia spp.

Male and female infls. of the same Chamaedorea sp. are sometimes very different, e.g., spicate or forked vs. multi-branched. The ephemeral and seldom-collected male infls. and fls. generally provide the most useful diagnostic characters for Chamaedorea spp.; however, complete information is ideal. Whenever a Chamedorea specimen at anthesis is encountered in the field, a thorough search should be made for flowering conspecifics of the opposite gender, since male and female plants of a particular sp. must obviously flower in synchrony.

Costa Rica and Panama comprise a center of diversity for Chamaedorea, which is especially species-rich in mid-elevation rain forests. Many spp. (especially those with simple lvs.) are ornamental, and assiduously sought by unscrupulous collectors. Wild populations of such spp. are under constant siege, and some have been extirpated. Most Chamaedorea spp. are ± rare and local to begin with, which exacerbates the problem.

Hodel, D. R. 1992. Chamaedorea palms: the species and their cultivation. International Palm Soc., Lawrence, KS.

1 All lf.-blades simple and bifid

2 Plants acaulescent, the stems much reduced and subterranean, or with very brief (< 0.3 m) aerial portion; lvs. all basal

3 Lf.-blades ca. (39--) 47--96 cm long; peduncles (29--) 72--172+ cm; male rachillae ca. 15--27 cm; male fls. with petals connate apically and strongly nerved; female infl. forked or racemosely branched, with 2--7 rachillae; rare, (600--) 800--1900 m, both slopes...C. rossteniorum

3' Lf.-blades ca. 12--47 cm long; peduncles ca. 6--51 (--94) cm; male rachillae ca. 4--21.5 cm; male fls. with petals distinct apically and nerveless; female infl. spicate to forked [rarely, racemosely branched with 3 (--19) rachillae]; widespread

4 Lf.-blades 20--47 X 13--24 cm, drying dark; peduncular bracts purplish at anthesis; infls. of both sexes spicate; Atl. slope...C. robertii

4' Lf.-blades 10--39 (--42) X 4--21 cm, drying green; peduncular bracts brownish or green; male infls racemosely branched, with (2--) 3--20 (--38) rachillae; female infls. spicate to forked, or racemosely branched with 3--6 (--19) rachillae; both slopes

5 Lvs. in crown 5--10; petiole beyond sheath 1--13.5 (--24) cm; peduncles 6--32 cm; rachis of male infl. (0.2--) 0.5--5.5 (--9.5) cm; male rachillae (2--) 3--10 (--18); female rachillae 3.5--17 cm, ± strongly recurved; (50--) 500--1500 (--2450) m, both slopes...C. pumila

5' Lvs. in crown 3--8; petiole beyond sheath 3.5--28 (--52) cm; peduncles 11--51 (--94) cm; rachis of male infl. 2.3--11.7 (--18.5) cm; male rachillae 5--20 (--38); female rachillae 3.5--7 (--9) cm, erect or lightly curved; ca. 1500--2300 m, Pac. slope...C. pygmaea

2' Plants caulescent, with ± slender, aerial stems, usually to at least 0.3 m tall; lvs. held aloft

6 Petiole beyond sheath 19--52+ cm; primary lateral lf. veins ca. 30--40 per side; peduncles 23.5--92.5 cm; infls. infrafoliar, those of both sexes racemosely branched; male rachillae 6--17; female rachillae 4--13; Atl. slope...C. lucidifrons

6' Petiole beyond sheath 2--35 cm; primary lateral lf. veins 5--26+ per side; peduncles 4--52 cm; infls. inter- or infrafoliar, spicate to racemosely branched; male rachillae 1--10; female rachillae 1--3 (--5); both slopes

7 Primary lateral lf. veins > 15 per side, at least on larger lf.-blades

8 Petiole beyond sheath 2--19 cm; lf.-blades 18--37 X 10--21 cm, incised distally to ca. 1/5--1/4 the total length; peduncles 4--17 cm; infls. infrafoliar; male rachillae 3--8; female rachillae 8--31 cm; ripe frts. black; (350--) 500--1100 m, Atl. slope...C. amabilis

8' Petiole beyond sheath 7--40 cm; lf.-blades 36--86 X 18--41 cm, incised distally to 2/5--1/2 the total length; peduncles 7.5--50+ cm; infls. interfoliar (often becoming infrafoliar); male rachilla(e) 1 (--2); female rachillae 3--18.5 cm; ripe frts. orange to red-orange; 0--1200+ m, both slopes

9 Lf.-blades incised distally ca. 3/5--1/2 the total length; male infls. multiple (4--10) per node; male rachilla 5.5--9.5 cm; stamens exserted; ripe frts. ca. 0.6--0.9 X 0.6--0.7 cm, subglobose; Atl. slope...C. deckeriana

9' Lf.-blades incised distally ca. 2/5 the total length; male infls. solitary at nodes; male rachilla(e) 14--27 cm; stamens included, or scarcely exserted; ripe frts. ca. 1.1--1.5 X 0.9--1.4 cm, obpyramidal; Pac. slope...C. zamorae

7' Primary lateral lf. veins < 15 per side

10 Lf.-blades 8--23.5 cm wide, incised distally > 1/2 the total length; infls. of both sexes forked to racemosely branched or, if female infl. spicate, rachilla 8--26 cm; widespread

11 Lvs. in crown 4--15; primary lateral lf. veins 5--10 per side; male rachillae pendulous at anthesis; 0--1400 m, widespread...C. dammeriana

11' Lvs. in crown ca. 6--12; primary lateral lf. veins 10--14 per side; male rachillae erect-spreading at anthesis; (450--) 700--1800 m, Atl. slope Cords. Central and Talamanca...C. palmeriana

10' Lf.-blades 5--11 cm wide, incised distally < 1/2 the total length; infls. of both sexes spicate; female rachilla 4--10.5 cm; 50--1200 m, Pac. slope

12 Lf.-blades incised distally ca. 3/10--1/2 the total length with broad sinus, the margins subentire or obscurely toothed, the primary lateral veins ± obscure adaxially; infls. interfoliar (often becoming infrafoliar), borne on upper portion of stem; male fls. with petals connate distally and basally; female infls. with rachilla 4--10.5 cm; ripe frts. ca. 0.7--0.9 cm long; 50--400 (--900) m...C. geonomiformis

12' Lf.-blades incised distally ca. 1/5 the total length, with very narrow sinus, the margins ± coarsely serrate, the primary lateral veins conspicuous adaxially; infls. infrafoliar, borne on lower portion of stem; male fls. with petals distinct nearly to base; female infls. with rachilla ca. 4--5.5 cm; ripe frts. ca. 1.1--1.3 cm long; 700--1200 m...C. piscifolia

1' At least some lf.-blades pinnately compound, with at least 2 lflts. on at least one side

13 Plants acaulescent, the stems much reduced and subterranean, or with very brief (< 0.3 m) aerial portion; lvs. all basal

14 Lflts. ca. 17--30 per side; infls. infrafoliar, those of both sexes recemosely branched with spreading to flexuous, filiform rachillae; male rachillae 40--100; female rachillae 15--200+; (200--) 550--1900 m, Pac. slope

15 Petiole beyond sheath 10.5--39 cm; lf.-rachis 25--47 cm; medial lflts. 6--13 X 0.7--1.8 cm; peduncles 11--20 (--31+) cm; rachis of male infl. ca. 5 cm; male rachillae 40--60; rachis of female infl. 3--6.5 (--10); female rachillae ca. 15--25 (--60); ridgetops, 1100--1900 m...C. binderi

15' Petiole beyond sheath ca. 50--110+ cm; lf.-rachis ca. 58--109+ cm; medial lflts. 16--46 X 0.8--3.1 cm; peduncles ca. 15--81 cm; rachis of male infl. 10--17 (--30) cm; male rachillae 44--100; rachis of female infl. 4.5--19 cm; female rachillae 37--200+; slopes and valleys, (200--) 550--1250 m...C. brachyclada

14' Lflts. ca. 2--22 per side; infls. interfoliar (mostly) or infrafoliar; male infl. forked (rarely) to racemosely or (rarely) subpaniculately branched, female infls. spicate to racemosely branched; male rachillae 2--65+; female rachilla(e) 1--18 (--29+); widespread

16 Petiole beyond sheath 20--76 cm; lf.-rachis 33--94 cm; lflts. 6--17 per side; peduncles (30--) 46--123 cm; male rachillae 14--32 cm; male fls. with petals connate apically and strongly nerved; rachis of female infl. (0--) 2--15 cm; female rachillae (2--) 6--29, (3--) 7.5--25 cm...C. macrospadix

16' Petiole beyond sheath 0.1--61 cm; lf.-rachis 6.5--88 cm; lflts. 2--22 per side; peduncles 8--102 cm; male rachillae 2--65+ cm; male fls. with petals distinct and nerveless or weakly nerved (except C. parvifolia); rachis of female infl. 0--7.7 (--13+) cm; female rachilla(e) 1--18 (--29+), 3.5--17 cm

17 Lflts. < 11 (--14) per side; petiole sheath split in apical 1/3 or less, tubular for most of its length (except C. pittieri and C. pygmaea)

18 Petiole sheath deeply split, tubular only near base; medial lflts. 0.7--2.8 (--4.1) cm wide, sigmoid, ± chartaceous; rachis of male infl. 2.3--11.7 (--18.5) cm; male rachillae 5--20 (--38), 4--11 cm; female rachilla(e) 3.5--7 (--9) cm; ca. 1500--2300 m, Pac. slope...C. pygmaea

18' Petiole sheath tubular or (C. pittieri) deeply split; medial lflts. 1.4--7.5 cm wide, straight or sigmoid, ± coriaceous; rachis of male infl. 0--6.5 cm; male rachillae 2--11, ca. 9--29 cm; female rachillae 3.5--15 cm; 1100--2400 m, both slopes

[Proceed to couplet 43]

17' Lflts. > 11 (10--) per side; petiole sheath deeply split, tubular only near base

19 Lf.-rachis (31--) 40--88 cm; medial lflts. 12.5--40 X 1.2--5.1 cm; peduncles 24--102 cm; rachis of male infl. 5.5--26 cm; male rachillae 3--17 cm; rachis of female infl. 0--7.7 (--13+) cm; female rachillae 2--18 (--29+)...C. scheryi

19' Lf.-rachis 13.5--64 cm; medial lflts. 5--24.5 X 0.4--3.8 cm; peduncles 8--56.5 cm; rachis of male infl. (0.8--) 3.5--12.5 cm; male rachillae 2--10.5 cm; rachis of female infl. 0--5.7 cm; female rachilla(e) 1--6 (--11)

20 Petiole beyond sheath 5--30 cm; lf.-rachis 13.5--32 cm; medial lflts. 4.5--13 X 0.4--1.7 cm; peduncles 8--29 cm; male rachillae (4--) 8--47, 2--10.5 cm; female rachilla(e) 1--2, 6.5--12.5 cm; Pac. slope...C. stenocarpa

20' Petiole beyond sheath 2.5--61 cm; lf.-rachis 19.5--64 cm; medial lflts. 5.5--24.5 X 0.8--3.8 cm; peduncles 14--56.5 cm; male rachillae ca. 13--27, 2--10 cm; female rachilla(e) (1--) 2--6 (--11), 4--9.5 cm; Atl. slope...C. undulatifolia

13' Plants caulescent, with ± slender, aerial stems, usually to at least 0.3 m tall; lvs. held aloft

21 Lflts. > 17 per side on at least some larger lvs.

22 Stems cespitose, spreading via short rhizomes and forming tight colonies; petiole sheath prolonged distally in a pair of marcescent ligules; widespread native sp., and also widely cult....C. costaricana

22' Stems solitary, sometimes approximate, but not spreading via rhizomes; petiole sheath lacking distal ligules

23 Petiole beyond sheath ca. 21--30 cm; lf.-rachis ca. 66--88 cm; lflts. ca. 32--36 per side, < 2 cm wide, straight; peduncle ca. 34--50 cm; infl. rachis (both genders) ca. 2--7 cm; male fls. green; rare and local, 0--650+ m, Atl. slope... C. graminifolia

23' Petiole beyond sheath ca. 18--61 cm; lf.-rachis ca. 70--140 cm; lflts. ca. 12--23+ per side, > 2 cm wide, sigmoid; peduncle ca. 7.5--23 (--38.5) cm; infl. rachis (both genders) ca. 2.3--27.5 cm; widespread and sometimes cult.... C. tepejilote

21' Lflts. (2--) 3--17 per side

24 Infls. of both sexes subpaniculately to paniculately branched, with rachis and rachillae conspicuously ornamented longitudinally with coarsely crispate ridges, these marginally pubescent with minute, concrescent, whitish trichomes; 1500--1800 m, Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca... C. incrustata

24' Infls. spicate to racemosely or paniculately branched, usually ± smooth and subglabrous, never ornamented as above; widespread

25 Plants with male infls.

26 Male infl. spicate or forked

27 Male fls. with petals inflexed, connate apically and basally, distinct laterally, prominently nerved externally [Proceed to couplet 31]

27' Male fls. with petals spreading to erect or inflexed, distinct apically and often to base, nerveless or lightly nerved

28 Petiole, lf.-rachis, and proximal portion of lflts. densely nodulose abaxially; petiole beyond sheath < 5 cm; lflts. < 15 X 4.5 cm; peduncle < 5 cm; rare and local, ca. 1190 m, Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca... C. rosibeliae

28' Petiole, lf.-rachis, and proximal portion of lflts. ± smooth, without conspicuous nodules; petiole beyond sheath > 5 cm; lflts. (at least some larger ones) > 15 X 4.5 cm; peduncle > 5 cm; widespread [Proceed to couplet 37]

26' Male infl. racemosely or subpaniculately branched

29 Male fls. with petals inflexed, connate apically and basally, distinct laterally, prominently nerved externally

30 Petiole sheath deeply split, tubular only near base; lflts. 6--17 per side, ± straight, with dominant midrib; peduncles ca. (30--) 46--123 cm; both slopes...C. macrospadix

30' Petiole sheath split apically, tubular for most of length; lflts. (2--) 3--8 (--9), ± sigmoid, without dominant midrib (except sometimes in C. pinnatifrons); peduncles ca. 7--79 cm

31 Petiole sheath thick and coarsely veined; lf.-rachis ca. 9--36 cm; medial lflts. < 25 cm long, < 5.1 cm wide, ± coriaceous; male rachillae 2--5, 9.5--20 cm; 1200--2400 m, mainly Pac. slope... C. parvifolia

31' Petiole sheath not notably thick or coarsely veined; lf.-rachis ca. 4--80 cm; largest medial lflts. > 20 cm long and/or > 5.1 cm wide, ± chartaceous; male rachilla(e) (1--) 3--26, the larger ones usually > 20 cm; widespread

32 Petiole beyond sheath 2--39 (--43) cm; lf.-rachis 4--67 cm; medial lflts. 9--40 X 1.6--9.2 cm; peduncles 7--33 (--64) cm; male rachilla(e) (1--) 3--18...C. pinnatifrons

32' Petiole beyond sheath 10--63 cm; lf.-rachis 33.5--80 cm; medial lflts. 17--37 X 3.5--13 cm; peduncles 20--76 cm; male rachillae 7--26

[Proceed to couplet 50]

29' Male fls. with petals inflexed to ± erect or spreading, distinct apically, nerveless to lightly nerved externally

33 Lf.-rachis > 70 cm; lflts. > 11 per side; infls. infrafoliar; male rachillae 11--50+...C. tepejilote

33' Lf.-rachis < 70 (--74) cm; lflts. < 12 per side; infls. inter- or infrafoliar; male rachillae 3--17

34 Petiole sheath thick and coarsely veined; lflts. ± straight, ± coriaceous, closely and prominently plicate-veined; male rachillae ca. 10--29 cm; male fls. 2--4 mm long; rare and local spp. [Proceed to couplet 44]

34' Petiole sheath not notably thick or coarsely veined; lflts. ± sigmoid, ± chartaceous, not prominently plicate-veined; male rachillae ca. 11--33 cm; male fls. ca. 1.5--2.5 mm long; widespread

35 Lvs. in crown to 15; petiole 2--13.5 (--22.5) cm; lf.-rachis (2.5--) 4--30 cm; lflts. (1--) 2--7 per side; medial lflts. 7.5--23.5 X 0.8--5.3 cm; infls. interfoliar; peduncles 7--38 cm; rachis of male infl. 1--4.5 (--7.5) cm; male rachillae 3--10; 0--1400 m, both slopes... C. dammeriana

35' Lvs. in crown 3--7; petiole 19--52+ cm; lf.-rachis 33--74 cm; lflts. 3--8 per side; medial lflts. 20--48 X 1.9--11 cm; infls. infrafoliar; peduncles 23.5--92.5 cm; rachis of male infl. 1--11.5 cm; male rachillae 6--17; 0--1000 m, Atl. slope... C. lucidifrons

25' Plants with female infls., or infrs.

36 Female infl. spicate, the fls. and frts. contiguous to compacted; ripe frts. orange to red-orange, or (C. hodelii) dark purplish to black

37 Male infls. multiple (4--10) at nodes; male rachilla < 10 cm, erect; male fls. cream-white to yellow-green; ripe frts. ca. 0.6--0.9 cm long, smooth, orange to red-orange; 0--1200+ m, Atl. slope... C. deckeriana

37' Male infls. solitary at nodes; male rachilla 10--34 cm, pendulous; male fls. white or cream-yellowish to light green; ripe frts. 0.7--1.5 cm long, smooth or echinulate, orange or blackish; Pac. slope, or > (700--) 1100 m on Atl. slope

38 Petiole beyond sheath ca. 6.5--32 cm; lf.-rachis ca. 14.5--54 cm; lflts. (10--) 13--34 X 1.7--7.6 cm, sigmoid; male fls. ca. 6.5--7 mm long, with petals connate for ca. 1/2--3/4+ their length; ripe frts. smooth, dark purplish to black (700--) 1100--2000+ cm, Atl. slope and near CD... C. hodelii

38' Petiole beyond sheath ca. 10--65 cm; lf.-rachis ca. 25--94 cm; lflts. 19.5--55 X 1.4--9.8 cm, ± straight to weakly sigmoid; male fls. ca. 2.5--5 mm long, with petals distinct or connate only at very base; ripe frts. smooth or verrucose-echinulate, orange to red-orange; 50--2300 m, Pac. slope

39 Petiole sheath deeply split, tubular only near base; sepals of male fls. narrowly ligulate to oblanceolate, > 2X as long as wide, ca. 3/4 to as long as petals; ripe frts. 0.7--1.2 X 0.5--0.7 cm, verrucose-echinulate; (1150-) 1500--2300 m, Cord. Talamanca, S Fila Costeña... C. crucensis

39' Petiole sheath split ca. halfway to base, or slightly more; sepals of male fls. quadrate to obdeltate, ca. 1--2X as long as wide, ca. 1/2 as long as petals; ripe frts. 1.1--1.5 X 0.9--1.4 cm, smooth; 50--500 (--800) m, S from RB Carara... C. zamorae

36' Female infl. forked or racemosely to subpaniculately branched, if occasionally (C. anemophila, C. dammeriana, C. pinnatifrons) spicate, the fls. and frts. well separated; ripe frts. dark purplish to black

40 Female infl. spicate or with 2--4 rachillae; female rachilla(e) mostly erect or suberect (except C. anemophila)

41 Petiole sheath not notably thick or coarsely veined; lflts. ± chartaceous; widespread

42 Stems ca. 0.3--2 (--3.5) m tall and 0.3--2.0 cm diam; lflts. (1--) 2--6 per side; medial lflts. 7.5--23.5 X 0.8--5.3 cm; infls. interfoliar; female fls. ca. 1.7--2.5 mm... C. dammeriana

42' Stems ca. 0.4--4 m tall and 0.5--3.0+ cm diam; lflts. (2--) 4--7 (--9) per side; medial lflts. 9.5--40 X 1.6--9 cm; infls. inter- or infrafoliar; female fls. ca. 1.0--1.5 mm long; widespread... C. pinnatifrons

41' Petiole sheath thick and coarsely veined; lflts. ± coriaceous; rare spp., 1100--2400 m

43 Lflts. 3--7 per side, sigmoid, not plicate-veined; peduncles 16.5--79 cm, without basal, abaxial callus; male rachillae 9.5--20 cm; male fls. with petals connate apically and strongly nerved; female rachillae 2--5; female fls. ca. 1--2.5 mm; long... C. parvifolia

43' Lflts. 4--11 per side, ± straight, closely and prominently plicate-veined, with ± prominent basal, abaxial callus; peduncles 16--99 cm; male rachillae 10--29 cm; male fls. with petals distinct apically and lightly nerved; female rachillae 1--4; female fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long

44 Lvs. in crown 3--6; petiole sheath split apically, tubular for most of length; lf.-rachis 15--33 cm; lflts. 4--8 per side; medial lflts. 1.5--3.7 cm wide; infls. mostly infrafoliar; peduncles 16--31 cm; female infls. and infrs. flexuous or drooping; ripe frts. ca. 0.6--1.1 X0.5--0.7 cm; ca. 1200 m, Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca... C. anemophila

44' Lvs. in crown 6--10; petiole sheath deeply split, tubular for ± 1/2 its length; lf.-rachis 26--60 cm; lflts. 7--11 per side; medial lflts. 1.4--7.5 cm wide; infls. interfoliar; peduncles ca. 27--99 cm; female infls. and infrs. suberect; ripe frts. ca. 1.0--1.5 X 0.7--1.0; 1100--2400 m, Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca...C. pittieri

40' Female infls. forked (very rarely) to racemosely or subpaniculately branched, nearly always with > 4 rachillae; female rachillae mostly spreading to flexuous, drooping, or pendulous (except C. pinnatifrons)

45 Petiole sheath deeply split, tubular only near base; lflts. 6--17 per side, ± straight, with dominant midrib; peduncles (30--) 46--123 cm C. macrospadix

45' Petiole sheath split apically, tubular for most of length; lflts. (2--) 3--17 per side, sigmoid, without dominant midrib; peduncles 7--92.5 cm

46 Lf.- rachis ca. 70--140 cm; lflts. 12--17 per side; medial lflts. 25--63 cm long; infls. infrafoliar... C. tepejilote

46' Lf.-rachis ca. 4--80 cm; lflts. (2--) 3--8 (--9) per side; medial lflts. 9--48 cm long; infls. inter- or infrafoliar

47 Petiole beyond sheath (2.5--) 10--25 cm, the sheath thick, coarsely veined; lf.-rachis 15--33 cm; medial lflts. 9--23 X 1.5--3.7 cm, ± straight, ± coriaceous, closely and prominently plicate-veined, with ± prominent basal, abaxial callus; female fls. 2.5--3.5 mm long; very rare, ca. 1200 m, Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca... C. anemophila

47' Petiole beyond sheath 2--63 cm, the sheath not notably thick or coarsely veined; lf.-rachis 4--80 cm; medial lflts. 9--48 X 1.6--13 cm, ± sigmoid, ± chartaceous, not plicate-veined, without basal, abaxial callus; female fls. 1--2.5 mm long; widespread

48 Petiole beyond sheath 2--39 (--43) cm; peduncles 7--33 (--64) cm; female rachillae (1--) 3--16 (--40), 5--15 (--25) cm, held erect at anthesis...C. pinnatifrons

48' Petiole beyond sheath 10--63 cm; peduncles 20--92.5 cm; female rachillae 4--18, (5--) 7--31 cm, spreading to pendulous at anthesis

49 Lvs. in crown 3--7; infls. infrafoliar; peduncles 23.5--92.5 cm; ripe frts. 0.5--0.8 X 0.4--0.5 cm; Atl. slope... C. lucidifrons

49' Lvs. in crown 4--9; infls. interfoliar (sometimes soon becoming infrafoliar); peduncles 20--76 cm; ripe frts. 0.7--1.4 X 0.6--1.0 cm; both slopes

50 Lf.-rachis 33.5--80 cm; terminal pair of lflts. usually at least twice as wide as other lflts.; primary lf. veins not elevated adaxially; peduncles ca. 27--62.5 cm; male rachillae ca. 7--13; female rachillae pendulous at anthesis and in frt.; 0--750 m, Pac. slope S from RB Carara... C. matae

50' Lf.-rachis ca. 37.5--62 cm; terminal pair of lflts. ± wider than other lflts., but < twice as wide; primary lf. veins prominently elevated adaxially; peduncles ca. 20--76 cm; male rachillae ca. 7--26; female rachillae spreading at anthesis, becoming pendulous in frt.; 400--1050 m, entire Atl. slope, Pac. slope Cord. Guanacaste... C. warscewiczii

Chamaedorea amabilis H. Wendl. ex Dammer, Gard. Chron. ser. 3, 36: 245. 1904. [C. coclensis L. H. Bailey].--Stems solitary, 0.7--2 m tall and ca. 0.5--1.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--7. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 2--19 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 18--37 X 10--21 cm, elliptical to oblong, incised distally to ca. 1/5--1/4 the total length, with 17--27 primary lateral veins per side, the margins prominently serrate especially in distal half. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 4--17 cm, ascending. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 0.3--2.5 cm; rachillae 3--8, 8--22 cm, ± erect; fls. ca. 1.5 mm long, greenish and aromatic, the petals connate apically, inconspicuously nerved. Female infls. spicate or (less commonly) forked; rachilla(e) ca. 8--31 cm, erect; fls. ca. 1.5--2 mm long, green. Ripe frts. ca. 0.6--0.7 X 0.6--0.7 cm, smooth, subglobose to oblong, black. Wet forests, (350--) 500--1100 m; Atl. slope Cords. Tilarán, Central, and Talamanca. Fl. 1, 5, 7--8, 10--12. CR to E cent. Pan. [Liesner 14428, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea amabilis is a very distinctive sp., easily recognized by its caulescent habit and simple, ± oblong, prominently serrate lf.-blades, shallowly incised distally and with numerous (17--25) primary lateral veins. Though generally identifiable by lf.-form alone, C. amabilis might conceivably be confused with simple-lvd. individuals of C. lucidifrons, which are much larger in all of their parts, or with some unusual collections of the acaulescent C. pumila.

This highly ornamental sp. is quite uncommon, found only in very wet, Atl.-slope forests.

Chamaedorea anemophila Hodel, Principes 39: 14, figs. 1--4. 1995.--Stems solitary, obsolete to 3.5 m tall and ca. 0.6--1.8 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--6. Petioles beyond sheath (2.5--) 10--25 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 15--33 cm; lflts. 4--8 per side, 9--23 X 1.5--3.7 cm (medial ones), ± straight, with basal, abaxial callus. Infls. mostly infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 16--31 cm, ascending. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 1.5--6.5 cm; rachillae ca. 4--11, ca. 14--18 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 3--4 mm long, {color?}, the petals distinct and spreading, lightly nerved. Female infls. spicate to forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--2.5 cm; rachilla(e) 1--4 (--8), ca. 13--18 cm, flexuous to drooping; fls. ca. 2.5--3.5 mm long, light yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.6--1.1 X 0.5--0.7 cm, smooth, ellipsoid to obovoid, black. Wet forests, ca. 1200 m; Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca (Fila Bugú, Alto Urén). Fl. 2--3; Fr. 7. CR to E cent. Pan. [G. Herrera 3366, INB.]

Chamaedorea anemophila, known from just two Costa Rican collections, is much more common in W Panama. It is very similar to Chamaedorea pittieri, a rare sp. of the Pac. slope (see key, couplet 44). These spp. share thick, coarsely veined petiole sheaths, ± coriaceous, plicate-veined lflts. with basal, abaxial calluses, and relatively large male flowers with the petals distinct apically and lightly nerved. The sympatric Chamaedorea rosibeliae (which see), though with spicate male infls., should also be compared.

Chamaedorea binderi Hodel, Principes 40: 215, figs. 4--6. 1996.--Stems solitary, obsolete to at least 1.2 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--4. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 10.5--39 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 25--47 cm; lflts. 17--30 per side, 6--13 X 0.7--1.8 cm (medial ones), straight. Infls. infrafoliar (basal); peduncle ca. 11--20 (--31+) cm, ascending. {Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 5 cm; rachillae to 60, to 5 cm, filiform, diverging at right angles; fls. unknown}. Female infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 3--6.5 (--10) cm; rachillae ca. 15--25 (--60), 1--5 cm, filiform, diverging at right angles; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, {color?}. Ripe frts. ca. 0.5--0.7 X 0.6--0.7 cm, smooth, globose, black. Wet forests, ridgetops, 1100--1900 m; Pac. slope, Cord. Talamanca (Candelaria region) and Fila Costeña. Fl. 1. ENDEMIC. [Grayum 9280, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea binderi is in all respects little more than a uniformly more diminutive version of the sympatric C. brachyclada (see key, couplet 15). That the former has been found only on ridgetops and the latter on slopes and in valleys suggests the possibility that these may be mere ecotypes.

Some male specimens of C. binderi may closely resemble the sympatric C. stenocarpa, which see for distinguishing features.

Chamaedorea brachyclada H. Wendl., Gartenflora 29: 101. 1880.--Stems solitary, obsolete to ca. 0.25 m, to ca. 2--3 cm diam. Lvs. in crown ca. 3--4. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 50--110+ cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 58--109+ cm; lflts. 24--30 per side, 16--46 X 0.8--3.1 cm (medial ones), ± straight. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 15--81 cm, arcuate-ascending. Male infls. racemosely to subpaniculately branched; rachis 10--17 (--30) cm; rachillae 44--100, ca. 5--15 cm, filiform, diverging at right angles; fls. 2--3 mm long, yellowish green, the petals connate at base, recurved distally, nerveless. Female infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 4.5--19 cm; rachillae 37--200+, 3--6 cm, filiform, flexuous; {fls. ca. 3--3.5 mm long, yellow-green}. Ripe frts. ca. 0.4--0.6 X 0.4--0.5 cm, smooth, globose, black. Wet forests, slopes and valleys, (200--) 550--1250 m; Pac. slope S from Río Parritilla (Cantón de Acosta). Fl. 1, 5--7, 9, 12. CR and extreme W Pan. (Chiriquí). [Grayum et al. 11176, INB, MO.]

Chamaedorea brachyclada is an unusual sp., confusable only with the sympatric and dubiously distinct C. binderi (see key, couplet 15, and comments under C. binderi). These spp., which share an acaulescent habit and pinnately compound lf.-blades, are unique among Costa Rican Chamaedorea in their basal infls. with very numerous (15--200+), stiffly spreading, filiform rachillae. Though first collected in the 1800's, C. brachyclada was not found again for nearly a century.

Chamaedorea costaricana Oerst., Vidensk. Meddel. Dansk Naturhist. Foren. Kjøbenhavn 1858: 19. 1859. [C. linearia L. H. Bailey; C. quezalteca Standl. & Steyerm.; C. seibertii L. H. Bailey].--Stems cespitose, 1--8 m tall and ca. 1--5 cm diam, glaucous (at least toward base). Lvs. in crown 3--6. Petioles beyond sheath 8.5--44 cm, the sheath tubular, sometimes forming a conspicuous crownshaft to ca. 1 m, with a distal ligulate structure on each side. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 45--86 (--170) cm; lflts. 16--27 (--33) per side, 19--40 (--63) X 1.1--3.5 (--4.5) cm (medial ones), slightly sigmoid to nearly straight. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle 7.5--45 (--57) cm, erect-spreading. Male infls. racemosely to subpaniculately branched; rachis 2.2--21 (--35) cm; rachillae 7--25 (--60), (3--) 6--29 cm, flexuous and ± pendulous; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, cream-yellow to orange-yellow, the petals distinct nearly to base, spreading distally, obscurely nerved. Female infls. racemosely to subpaniculately branched; rachis 3.3--27.5 (--37) cm; rachillae 5--26 (--65), 11.5--32 cm, spreading; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, cream-yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--0.9 X 0.7--0.9 cm, smooth, globose or subglobose, black. Wet, moist, and rain forests, 500--2350 m; Atl. slope Cords. Tilarán, Central (very rare) and Talamanca, entire Pac. slope; also widely cult. Fl. 1--5, 8--12. S Mex. (Chis.) to W Pan (Chiriquí, Pen. Azuero). [Grayum & Peña 10786, INB, MO.]

The familiar Chamaedorea costaricana is unique among Costa Rican Chamaedorea spp. in its cespitose, colonial habit, and also in the distal, marcescent ligules of its petiole sheaths. Unfortunately, these features, so useful in the field, may not be preserved on herbarium specimens. Still, its caulescent habit and numerous, ± narrow, usually straight lflts. suffice to distinguish C. costaricana from all but a few, very rare Chamaedorea spp. (but see also the vegetatively very similar Hyospathe elegans).

All parenthetical maxima in the above description pertain to populations from above 1300 m on the Atl. slope of Cord. Talamanca [e.g., Grayum 10373 (INB, MO)], which comprise exceptionally robust individuals. The very few collections of C. costaricana from lower elevations on the Atl. slope do not differ significantly from Pac. slope material. A similar phenomenon (direct correlation between elevation and size) has been noted in other Costa Rica palm spp., e.g., Chamaedorea tepejilote (in the Cord. Tilarán) and Geonoma edulis. Robust specimens of C. costaricana have been confused with the equally large, but solitary-stemmed, C. woodsoniana L. H. Bailey, known from Mexico through northern Nicaragua and throughout Panama, but not yet recorded from Costa Rica. Molina 17333, the only Costa Rican collection referred to C. woodsoniana by Hodel (1992), represents Synechanthus warscewiczianus.

Chamaedorea costaricana is very well known as a cultivated ornamental in Costa Rica (especially the Meseta Central), and throughout the warmer regions of the world. It is extremely similar to the Mexican C. pochutlensis Liebm. (the older name), but the latter sp. lacks the petiolar ligules.

Chamaedorea crucensis Hodel, Principes 34: 166, fig. 7. 1990. [C. coralliformis Hodel].--Stems solitary, ca. 0.75--3 m tall and 1.0--2.5 cm diam. Lvs. in crown ca. 5--8. Petioles beyond sheath ca. (14.5--) 28--65 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 35--94 cm; lflts. ca. 6--13 per side, 19.5--37 X 1.4--6.5 cm (medial ones), ± straight to weakly sigmoid. Infls. inter- or infrafoliar; peduncle (11--) 18--43 cm, ascending. Male infls. spicate; rachilla ca. 10--34 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2.5--5 mm long, cream-colored to light yellowish, the petals distinct, erect-inflexed, nerveless. Female infls. spicate; rachilla ca. (4.5--) 6--15 cm; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, light yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--1.2 X 0.5--0.7 cm, verrucose-echinulate, ± obovoid-prismatic, orange. Rain forests, (1150-) 1500--2300 m; Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca, Fila Costeña (Fila Cruces). Fl. 1--2, 11--12. ENDEMIC. [Hammel & Hammel 18529, INB, MO.]

The peculiar, finely echinulate, orange frts. of Chamaedorea crucensis are unique among Costa Rican spp. Without mature frts., however, this sp. may be difficult to distinguish on morphological grounds from other spp. with acaulescent habit, pinnately compound lf.-blades, and spicate infls., especially C. hodelii and C. zamorae (see key, couplets 38--39). Fortunately, neither of the last-mentioned spp. has been collected within the range of C. crucensis (though C. zamorae occurs at lower elevations in the Fila Costeña).

The concept of Chamaedorea crucensis espoused by Hodel (1992) included material here segregated as C. hodelii (see thereunder for additional comments germane to this group).

Chamaedorea dammeriana Burret, Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 11: 737. 1933. [C. chazdoniae Hodel; C. wedeliana L. H. Bailey].--Stems solitary, 0.3--2 (--3.5) m tall and ca. 0.3--2.0 cm diam. sometimes rhizomatous proximally. Lvs. in crown ca. 4--15. Petioles beyond sheath 2--13.5 (--22.5) cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades simple and bifid or (somewhat more frequently) pinnately compound with rachis (2.5--) 4--30 cm, if simple ca. 14--39 (--44) X 8--23.5 cm, obovate or deltate, incised distally ca. 1/2--2/3 (--3/4) the total length, with ca. 5--10 primary lateral veins per side, the margins subentire to ± weakly crenate to serrate distally, if pinnate with lflts. (1--) 2--7 per side, 7.5--23.5 X 0.8--5.3 cm (medial ones), slightly to conspicuously sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar; peduncle ca. 7--38 cm, ascending. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 1--5.5 (--7.5) cm; rachillae 3--10, ca. (4.5--) 12--33 cm, slender, pendulous, cream-colored; fls. ca. 1.5--2.0 mm long, cream-colored to greenish yellow, the petals distinct nearly to the base, nerveless or obscurely nerved. Female infls. spicate to (less commonly) forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--1.5 (--3.2) cm; rachilla(e) 1--3 (--5), (4--) 8--26 cm, erect; fls. ca. 1.7--2.5 mm long, cream-colored. Ripe frts. 0.7--1.8 X 0.4--0.9 cm, smooth, subglobose to (much more frequently) broadly to narrowly ellipsoidal or subfusiform, black. Wet forests, 0--1400 m; Atl. slope and near CD, all major cords., Pac. slope Cord. Guanacaste and S from RB Carara and ZP Cerros de Turrubares. Fl. 1--9, 11--12. SE Nic. to extreme W Pan. (Bocas del Toro). [Ivey 319, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea dammeriana is a widespread (in Costa Rica), highly variable sp. that is, at the same time, usually easily recognized. Lvs. may vary, in a single population, from simple and bifid to fully pinnate (as noted even in the original description), and female infls. from spicate to forked or sparingly branched [the Panamanian (Prov. Bocas del Toro) type of C. wedeliana is unique in having 5 female rachillae]. Nonetheless, the caulescent habit, smallish stature, small male fls. with the petals distinct apically and obscurely nerved, few, erect female rachillae, and usually ellipsoidal frts. combine to distinguish the sp. Chamaedorea dammeriana may be viewed as the pivotal element in a group of closely related and ± similar spp., including especially (in Costa Rica) C. anemophila, C. incrustata, C. lucidifrons (key, couplet 35), C. palmeriana (key, couplet 11), C. pittieri, and C. rosibeliae. For distinguishing characteristics, see sp. key (where indicated) and discussions under the other spp.

The distribution of C. dammeriana is somewhat more spotty than suggested by the above summary. Most collections are from the Pac. slope of Cord. Guanacaste around to the Atl. slope of Cord. Tilarán and the San Carlos region, with secondary concentrations at 0--850 on the Atl. slope of Cord. Talamanca S from Siquirres, and in the central Pac. region (RB Carara, ZP Cerros de La Cangreja, etc.). Evidence of some local differentiation is appreciable in the various, ± isolated portions of the range. Populations on the Atl. slope of the Cord. Central differ somewhat in tending to have rhizomatous stems, somewhat shorter peduncles, and shorter infl. rachillae (of both genders). This material (for which the name Chamaedorea chazdoniae is available) perhaps merits taxonomic recognition at infraspecific rank.

Chamaedorea deckeriana (Klotzsch) Hemsl., Biol. cent.-amer., Bot. 3: 404. 1885. [Stachyophorbe deckeriana Klotzsch, Allg. Gartenzeitung 20: 364. 1852; Dasystachys deckeriana (Klotzsch) Oerst.].--Stems solitary, mostly 0.5--2 m tall (rarely subacaulescent) and 1.0--3.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--8. Petioles beyond sheath 7--31.5 cm, long-open, tubular only in basal 1/3--2/3. Lf.-blades simple and bifid {sometimes pinnate?}, 36--86 X 18--36 cm, obovate to oblanceolate, incised distally ca. 3/5--1/2 the total length, with (11--) 15--26+ primary lateral veins per side, the margins obscurely to prominently serrate distally. Infls. interfoliar (sometimes becoming infrafoliar); peduncle 7.5--50+ cm, erect. Male infls. spicate, 4--10 per node; rachilla 5.5--9.5 cm; fls. ca. 1.0--1.2 mm long, cream-white or -yellowish to yellow-green, the petals inflexed apically, nerveless. Female infls. spicate; rachilla 4.9--15 cm, erect; fls. 2--2.5 mm long, white to yellowish or green. Ripe frts. ca. 0.6--0.9 X 0.6--0.7 cm, smooth, subglobose to ± compressed-obovoid, orange or red-orange. Wet forests, 0--1200+ m; entire Atl. slope. Fl. 2, 5--10. Extr. SE Nic. to E Pan. [Haber & Zuchowski 9340, CR, MO.]

Its caulescent habit, simple and rather large lf.-blades with numerous (> 15 per side) primary lateral veins, and spicate infls. of both genders combine to distinguish Chamaedorea deckeriana from all Costa Rican congeners except the Pac. slope C. zamorae (see key, couplet 9). The small, erect male infls. borne multiply at the nodes and orange or red-orange ripe frts. are additional distinguishing features. Female specimens may be difficult to separate from the potentially sympatric C. robertii, but the latter is typically acaulescent (in Costa Rica), and has fewer primary lateral lf. veins.

D. R. Hodel (pers. comm.) maintains that Chamaedorea deckeriana may occasionally have pinnately compound lf.-blades in Costa Rica. I have never personally encountered such plants in the field, nor seen any such collections. However, this type of variation is common enough in Chamaedorea that I have allowed for both possibilities in the sp. key. At higher elevations (> ca. 1000 m), pinnate-lvd. specimens of C. deckeriana might easily be confused with C. hodelii (which see), which has solitary male infls. and blackish ripe frts.

Chamaedorea geonomiformis H. Wendl., Allg. Gartenzeitung 20: 1. 1852. [C. tenella H. Wendl.].--Stems solitary, 0.2--0.9 (--1.3) m tall, ca. 0.3--0.8 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 5--14. Petioles beyond sheath 2--9.5 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 17--28 X 5.5--11 cm, narrowly obovate to oblong or oblanceolate, incised distally ca. 3/10--1/2 the total length, glossy, with 8--13 ± obscure (adaxially) primary lateral veins per side, the margins subentire or ± obscurely toothed especially distally. Infls. interfoliar (often becoming infrafoliar); peduncle 12--24.5 cm, very slender, erect to arching. Male infls. spicate (ours); rachilla ca. 10--19.5 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, cream-yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, lightly nerved. Female infls. spicate (ours); rachilla 4--10.5 cm, erect or curved; fls. ca. 1--1.5 mm long, {yellow}. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--0.9 X 0.6--0.8 cm, smooth, broadly ellipsoidal to subglobose, black. Wet forests, 50--400 (--900) m; Pac. slope S from vic. Quepos. Fl. 1--3, 6, 10. S Mex. (Chis., Ver.) to Hond., CR. [G. Herrera 4504, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea geonomiformis is well-marked in Costa Rica by its slender, aerial stems, smallish, glossy lf.-blades with < 15, ± obscure primary lateral veins per side, filiform peduncles, spicate infls. of both genders, and Pac. lowland habitat. It has sometimes been confused with C. pumila (also known from the Pac. lowlands), but the latter sp. is acaulescent and has branched male infls. Compare also C. piscifolia (key, couplet 12), the much larger C. zamorae, and simple-lvd. forms of C. dammeriana (with branched male infls. and longer female rachillae).

All Costa Rican collections of C. geonomiformis seen to date have spicate infls. However, material from N Cent. Amer. may have infls. (of either gender) with 2--3 rachillae and the type has 4--6 male rachillae! This sp. is rare in Costa Rica and represented by relatively few collections, so it is not inconceivable that plants with branched infls. may eventually be found. Mexican material (type of C. tenella) is somewhat different, with smaller and more prominently serrate lvs.

The name Chamaedorea geonomiformis was applied incorrectly by Standley (Fl. of Costa Rica), probably to C. deckeriana or C. robertii.

Chamaedorea graminifolia H. Wendl., Index palm. 62. 1854.--Stems solitary, to at least 2.5 m tall and 2.5 cm diam. Lvs. in crown ca. 3--5. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 21--30 cm, with basal, adaxial callus, the sheath tubular for most of its length and forming a brief crownshaft. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 66--88 cm; lflts. ca. 32--36 per side, ca. 25--31 X (0.3--) 1.1--1.3 cm (medial ones), straight. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 34--50 cm, suberect. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 2--7 cm; rachillae 5--15+, ca. 21--35 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, green, the petals distinct, nerveless. Female infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 4.8 cm; rachillae 7, ca. 20--25 cm, [spreading to ascending; fls. ca. 1.75--2.5 mm long, yellowish]. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7 X 0.35 cm, smooth, ellipsoid, {black}. Wet forests, 0--650+ m; Atl. slope, Llanuras de San Carlos and Santa Clara, Cord. Talamanca. Fr. 4. SE Nic. and CR. [Cook & Doyle 78, US.]

Chamaedorea graminifolia is amply distinct from all our other spp. in its caulescent habit, pinnately compound lf.-blades with numerous (ca. 32--36), narrowly linear, straight lflts., and infrafoliar infls. It is perhaps most apt to be confused with C. costaricana, which has cespitose stems and fewer and relatively wider lflts.

The holotype of C. graminifolia was prepared from a cultivated specimen of uncertain provenance. The above-cited fruiting specimen (from "plains of San Carlos," 100 m) represents the only wild-collected, fertile material of this species known to me. Two sterile Costa Rican collections are also known: Koschny s. n., Mar 1901 (GOET), also from "San Carlos," and Standley & Valerio 49006 (US), from 25 m elevation along the Río Reventazón (Prov. Limón). Cascante ex Herrera 1410 (CR) was prepared from a fertile male plant grown from seed collected at ca. 650 m elevation on the Atl. slope of Cord. Talamanca.

The concept of Chamaedorea graminifolia here adopted differs somewhat from that of Hodel (1992), who included the more northern C. schippii Burret (Bel., Guat.).

Chamaedorea hodelii Grayum, in press. [C. arenbergiana sensu Standl. (1937), non H. Wendl.; C. crucensis sensu Hodel (1992, pro parte), non Hodel (1990)].--Stems solitary, 0.7--2 m tall and ca. 0.9--2.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--6. Petioles beyond sheath 6.5--32 cm, the sheath split distally, mostly tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 14.5--54 cm; lflts. 2--10 per side, (10--) 14--34 X 1.7--7.6 cm (medial ones), sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar (becoming infrafoliar); peduncle 17.5--46 cm, suberect to nodding. Male infls. spicate; rachilla ca. 20--22 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 6.5--7 mm long, light green to yellow, the petals connate for 1/2--3/4+ their length and erect distally, lightly nerved. Female infls. spicate; rachilla ca. (3.3--) 7--11.5 (--17.5) cm, suberect to nodding; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, greenish white. Ripe frts. 1.0--1.1 X 0.8--1.0 cm, smooth, subglobose or obovoid-prismatic, dark purple or black. Wet forests, (700--) 1100--2000+ m; Atl. slope and near CD, Cords. Tilarán (rare), Central, and Talamanca. Fl. 5, 7--11. ENDEMIC. [Liesner & Judziewicz 14497, CR, MO.]

This is the only Costa Rican Chamaedorea sp. with a caulescent habit, pinnately compound lf.-blades, and spicate infls. of both sexes in which the ripe frts. are dark purplish to black (as opposed to orange or red-orange). Most specimens lack ripe frts., however, and would thus be difficult to distinguish on morphological grounds from the otherwise very similar C. crucensis and C. zamorae; however, both of the last-mentioned species are restricted to the Pac. slope. Pinnate-lvd. specimens (if such exist) of the potentially sympatric C. deckeriana might represent an even more significant identification problem, if not in frt. These four spp. seem adequately distinguished by characters of the male infls. and ripe frts., but these are ephemeral organs not commonly encountered in the field or herbarium. See under C. tepejilote for additional comments relating to this group.

Chamaedorea hodelii has a gone by a succession of misapplied names over the years, reflecting the taxonomic complexity of the group to which it belongs. In addition to those misused names indicated above, it has also sometimes been called (in herb.) Chamaedorea allenii L. H. Bailey, correctly applied to a more southern sp. (W cent. Pan. to NW Col.)

Chamaedorea incrustata Hodel, G. Herrera & Casc., Palm J. 137: 40, figs. 7--9. 1997.--Stems solitary, to ca. 6 m tall, 2.0--3.0 cm diam., with large prop-roots. Lvs. in crown 3--5. Petioles beyond sheath 6--28.5+ cm, the sheath deeply split distally, but tubular for most of its length, coriaceous and prominently striate when dry. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 59--85 cm; lflts. to at least 10--11 per side, ca. 12--41 X 2--10.5 cm (medial ones), falcate, convex above, ± coriaceous, iridescent blue-green, with basal, abaxial callus ± weakly developed. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 38--68 cm, arching, coarsely scurfy (especially distally). Male infls. paniculately branched; rachis 24 cm, ornamented longitudinally with coarsely crispate ridges, these marginally pubescent with minute, concrescent, whitish trichomes; rachillae to 58, to 16 cm, [flexuous, drooping], ornamented as rachis; fls. unknown. Female infls. paniculately to subpaniculately branched; rachis ca. 6.5--18.5 cm, ornamented as in male infls.; rachillae ca. 10--43, ca. 7.5--17.5 cm, ascending, ornamented as rachis; fls. unknown. Ripe frts. ca. 0.9--1.2 X 0.7--0.9 cm, smooth, ovoid to ellipsoidal or subglobose, black. Wet forests, 1500--1800 m; Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca (Tarrazú, Dota, upper Río General valley, C. Chirripó). Fl. 1, 11--12. ENDEMIC. [Hammel et al. 21177, CR, INB.]

The curiously encrusted infl. axes of both sexes of Chamaedorea incrustata are unique in the entire genus. Though its male fls. are unknown, this sp. undoubtedly belongs to the group centered upon C. dammeriana (which see). Within this group, C. incrustata has by far the most extensively branched infls. and the largest number of rachillae. Vegetatively, it bears a striking resemblance to the sympatric C. pittieri, but has longer petioles and somewhat larger lf.-blades and lflts.

Chamaedorea lucidifrons L. H. Bailey, Gentes Herb. 6: 244, fig. 127. 1943. [C. selvae Hodel].--Stems solitary, ca. 1--3.5 m tall and ca. 1.5--3.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--7. Petioles beyond sheath 19--52+ cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades simple and bifid or (more commonly) pinnately compound with rachis ca. 33--74 cm, if simple ca. 44--64 X 19--36 cm, obovate to oblong, incised distally ca. 1/4 the total length, with ca. 30--40 primary lateral veins per side, the margins serrate distally, if pinnate with lflts. 3--8 per side, 20--48 X 1.9--11 cm (medial ones), sigmoid. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle 23.5--92.5 cm, erect. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 1.0--11.5 cm; rachillae 6--17, 11--30 cm, slender, pendulous; fls. ca. 1.5--2.5 mm long, {color?}, the petals distinct and spreading, nerveless. Female infls. racemosely branched; rachis 0.7--12.5 cm; rachillae 4--13, 9--31 cm, flexuous; fls. 1.5--2.0 mm long, cream-colored. Ripe frts. 0.5--0.8 X 0.4--0.5 cm, [smooth], ellipsoid or oblong, black. Wet forests, 0--1000 m; Atl. slope all major cords., to PN Tortuguero and RNFS Barra del Colorado. Fl. 1--2, 7--8, 10--11. SE Nic. to W cent. Pan. [U. Chavarría 83, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea lucidifrons is distinguished by its caulescent habit, tubular petiole sheaths, infrafoliar infls., long peduncles, slender male rachillae, and smallish male fls. with the petals distinct and nerveless. The lvs. vary from simple to fully pinnate. Simple-lvd. plants might be mistaken for C. deckeriana (which has spicate infls.); plants with fully pinnate lvs. somewhat resemble C. tepejilote vegetatively (e.g., in having relatively broad, sigmoid lflts.), but have fewer lflts., generally longer peduncles, and very different infls. The morphology of the male infls. and fls. allies C. lucidifrons with C. dammeriana, which is much smaller in most of its parts and has interfoliar infls. (see key, couplet 35). It is also somewhat similar (because of its interfoliar infls.) to C. graminifolia, which differs in having much more numerous and narrower lflts.

This is an uncommon and seldom-collected sp. in Costa Rica.

Chamaedorea macrospadix Oerst., Vidensk. Meddel. Dansk Naturhist. Foren. Kjøbenhavn 1858: 20. 1859. [C. pedunculata Hodel & N. W. Uhl].--Stems solitary, obsolete to 3.5 m tall and ca. 1.0--2.5 (--5.0?) cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--8 (--11?). Petioles beyond sheath 20--76 cm, the sheath split ± deeply, tubular in basal 1/2 or less. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 33--94 cm; lflts. (5--) 6--17 per side, 18--45 X 1.4--8 cm (medial ones), ± straight or slightly sigmoid, with satiny sheen abaxially. Infls. interfoliar; peduncle (30--) 46--123 cm, erect or suberect. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 1--13.5 cm; rachillae 5--16 (--30+), ca. 14--32 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2.5--3 mm long, light green, the petals connate distally and basally, conspicuously nerved. Female infls. racemosely or subpaniculately branched; rachis (0--) 2--15 cm; rachillae (2--) 6--29, (3--) 7.5--25 cm, suberect to (mostly) spreading, ± stiff; fls. ca. 2.5 mm long, pale yellowish or greenish yellow. Ripe frts. 0.8--1.3 X 0.6--0.8 cm, smooth, subglobose, ellipsoidal, or obovoid, black. Wet forests, (0--) 100--1500 (--1900) m; Atl. slope and near CD, Cords. Tilarán, Central, and Talamanca, Pac. slope S from RB Carara and Fila Bustamante. Fl. 1--6, 8--12. CR to E Pan. [Grayum et al. 8785, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea macrospadix is generally easily recognized by its deeply split (non-tubular) petiole sheaths, pinnately compound lf.-blades with relatively numerous, ± straight lflts. with the midrib dominant, extremely long, erect peduncles, elongate rachillae (both sexes), and male fls. with the petals connate apically and strongly nerved. In life, the lflts. have a glossy or satiny sheen below, reminiscent of C. scheryi (which see) or Neonicholsonia watsonii. Occasional specimens with unusually broad and slightly sigmoid lflts. (e.g., the type of C. pedunculata) may be confused with related spp. such as C. matae, C. pinnatifrons, or C. warscewiczii, particularly if the peduncles are of less than average length. Because of its similar lvs. and long-pedunculate infls., C. macrospadix has also been confused with Synechanthus warscewiczianus (which see).

Plants of this sp. potentially develop an aerial stem, but are commonly fertile while still acaulescent. Populations may consist largely of acaulescent individuals, with one or a few caulescent "founder" plants.

Some collections from the Pac. slope of Cord. Tilarán in the Monteverde region [e.g., Ivey 31 (CR), Ivey 331 (CR)], though tentatively referred to Chamaedorea macrospadix, have unusually short (ca. 2--7 cm) female rachillae, and may represent hybrids or even some other species.

Chamaedorea matae Hodel, Principes 35: 75, figs. 5--7. 1991.--Stems solitary, mostly 1.5--3.5 m tall and ca. 1.5--2.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 4--9. Petioles beyond sheath 18--63 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 33.5--80 cm; lflts. 3--8 per side, 19.5--36 X 3.5--11 cm (medial ones), strongly sigmoid. Infls. inter- or infrafoliar; peduncle 27--62.5 cm, erect to nodding. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 2--5.5 cm; rachillae 7--13, 22--32 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, white or greenish yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, strongly nerved. Female infls. racemosely to subpaniculately branched; rachis 2--5.5 cm; rachillae 5--16, 9--21 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2 mm long, cream-colored. Ripe frts. 0.7--1.2 X 0.7--1.0 cm, smooth, subglobose to obovoid, black. Wet forests, 0--750 m; Pac. slope S from RB Carara. Fl. 3, 5, 7--9. CR to E Pan. [Hammel et al. 18893, CR, INB, MO.]

The apically connate, prominently nerved petals of its male fls. identify Chamaedorea matae as a member of the C. pinnatifrons complex (see thereunder). Within this group, it is one of the more nondescript spp., characterized by having pinnately compound lf.-blades with rather few, relatively broad lflts., the terminal pair usually ca. twice as wide as any others. The most similar sp. is C. warscewiczii, mainly of the Atl. slope (see key, couplet 50), of which C. matae might just as well be considered a subsp. Geography is one of the better distinguishing features for C. matae, as it occurs allopatrically with two (C. pinnatifrons, C. warscewiczii) of the three spp. to which it is most similar. The only real problem is the sympatric C. macrospadix, which differs from C. matae in its more deeply split petiole sheaths, generally more numerous, narrower, ± straight lflts., and longer peduncles.

Chamaedorea palmeriana Hodel & N. W. Uhl, Principes 34: 122, figs. 4--5. 1990.--Stems solitary, often creeping or decumbent, mostly 0.5--1.25 m tall, ca. 0.5--1.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown ca. 6--12. Petioles beyond sheath 2.5--15 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 11.5--30 X 9--21 cm, broadly obovate, incised distally to 1/2--2/3 the total length, with 10--14 primary lateral veins per side, the margins serrate distally. Infls. interfoliar, or becoming infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 11--52 cm, erect. Male infls. forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--5.5 cm; rachillae 2--8, 8--20.5 cm, erect-spreading; fls. ca. 2.0--2.5 mm long, pale green, {the petals connate distally and basally}, nerveless. Female infls. spicate or (less commonly) forked; rachilla(e) 8--17 (--24.5) cm, erect; fls. ca. 1.5--2 mm long, pale green. Ripe frts. ca. 0.9--1.2 X 0.5--0.6 cm, smooth, ellipsoidal, black. Rain forests, (450--) 700--1800 m; Atl. slope Cords. Central and Talamanca. Fl. 1--5, 8, 10--12. CR to W cent. Pan. [G. Herrera 3761, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea palmeriana is a distinctive sp., characterized by its small size, caulescent habit, simple, bifid lf.-blades, erect rachillae, and cloud-forest habitat. Female plants bear a strong resemblance to simple-lvd. forms of C. dammeriana, especially in their erect rachillae and ellipsoidal frts., but differ in having more numerous primary lateral lf. veins (see key, couplet 11). Male plants of C. palmeriana differ additionally from C. dammeriana in their erect rachillae. The two spp. are scarcely sympatric, if at all. Chamaedorea palmeriana was previously much confused with other dwarf, simple-lvd., cloud-forest spp., particularly C. pumila, which differs most conspicuously in being acaulescent.

Chamaedorea parvifolia Burret, Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 11: 746. 1933.--Stems solitary, obsolete to ca. 1 m tall, ca. 1.0--1.5 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 4--10. Petioles beyond sheath 3.3--49 cm, the sheath obliquely splitting distally. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis ca. 9--36 cm; lflts. 3--7 per side, ca. 9.5--24 X 1.5--5.0 cm (medial ones), sigmoid to ± straight, ± coriaceous. Infls. interfoliar; peduncle 16.5--79 cm, erect. Male infls. forked or (usually) racemosely branched; rachis 0--3 cm; rachillae 2--5, ca. 9.5--20 cm, ± spreading; fls. ca. 2.5--3 mm long, yellow or greenish yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, conspicuously nerved. Female infls. spicate (rarely) to forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--3 cm; rachilla(e) 1--5, 3.5--13 cm, suberect; fls. ca. 1--2.5 mm long, yellow or greenish yellow. Ripe frts. 0.7--0.9 X 0.6--0.8 cm, smooth, subglobose to ellipsoidal, black. Oak forests, 1200--2400 m; Pac. slope and near CD, Cords. Tilarán and Talamanca (vic. Cartago, Candelaria, Tarrazú, Dota), Tablazo, C. Caraigres. Fl. 2--5, 8, 11--12. ENDEMIC. [Grayum & Schatz 5139, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea parvifolia is a little-known (though sometimes locally abundant) sp. of oak forests, mainly on the Pac. slope. It has most frequently been compared with the potentially sympatric C. pittieri (see key, couplet 43), although the two spp. differ fundamentally in the structure of their male fls. (those of C. pittieri have distinct, lightly nerved petals), and are not considered closely related. Chamaedorea parvifolia belongs to the C. pinnatifrons group (see thereunder), within which it is distinctive by virtue of its thick petiole sheaths and foliage, smallish lvs., few, relatively short rachillae (of both sexes), and oak-forest habitat. In all respects it much resembles a reduced, high-elevation version of C. warscewiczii.

Chamaedorea pinnatifrons (Jacq.) Oerst., Vidensk. Meddel. Dansk Naturhist. Foren. Kjøbenhavn 1858: 14. 1859. [Borassus pinnatifrons Jacq., Pl. hort. schoenbr. 2: 65, t. 247--248. 1797--1800; C. aguilariana Standl. & Steyerm.; C. bifurcata Oerst.; C. flavovirens H. Wendl.; C. micrantha Burret; C. pacaya Oerst.; C. rhombea Burret].--Stems solitary, 0.3--4 m tall and 0.5--3.0+ cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--8 (--10?). Petioles beyond sheath 2--39 [--43] cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 4--67 cm; lflts. (2--) 4--7 (--9) per side, 9--40 X 1.6--9.2 cm (medial ones), sigmoid. Infls. inter- or infrafoliar; peduncle 7--33 (--64) cm, erect. Male infls. spicate (very rarely) or racemosely to (rarely) subpaniculately branched; rachis 0.5--8 (--13) cm; rachilla(e) (1--) 3--18, (4--) 5.7--29 [--33] cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 1.5--3.5 mm long, green to yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, strongly nerved. Female infls. spicate or forked to (much more commonly) racemosely to (less frequently) subpaniculately branched; rachis 0--7 (--13) cm; rachilla(e) (1--) 3--16 (--40), (3--) 5--15 (--25) cm, erect-spreading; fls. ca. 1.0--1.5 mm long, greenish to yellowish. Ripe frts. 0.7--1.3 X 0.5--0.9 cm, smooth, globose to ellipsoid or obovoid, black or purple-black. Wet forests, (0--) 400--2600+ m; entire Atl. slope and near CD, Pac. slope Cords. Guanacaste and Talamanca, C. Azahar, Montes del Aguacate, C. Escazú, Tablazo, C. Caraigres, C. Turrubares, Fila Costeña. Fl. 1--12. S Mex. (Oax., Ver.) to Venez., Bol. [Ríos 161, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea pinnatifrons is the most widespread and frequently collected sp. of the genus in Costa Rica, and in general. Though rather variable and nondescript, it may usually be recognized (in Costa Rica) by the combination of pinnately compound lf.-blades with rather few, sigmoid lflts., relatively short peduncles, male fls. with the petals connate apically and prominently nerved, and female rachillae erect at anthesis. This is the pivotal element in a group of ± closely related spp., including (in Costa Rica) C. macrospadix, C. matae, C. parvifolia, C. rossteniorum, C. warscewiczii, and perhaps C. geonomiformis. Some male specimens may be difficult to distinguish from C. warscewiczii (see key, couplet 32) or (less frequently) C. macrospadix; the similarly problematic C. matae appears to be wholly allopatric.

Material from very wet forests on the Atl slope of Cords. Central and Talamanca (Tapantí, etc.) here referred to C. pinnatifrons is somewhat aberrant in having unusually long lflts. and peduncles and long, ± spreading female rachillae. Fruiting collections from this region may be difficult to distinguish from the rather distantly related C. lucidifrons.

Chamaedorea pinnatifrons is uncommon below 400 m on the Atl. slope (Llanura de los Guatusos, EB La Selva, RNFS Barra del Colorado, PN Tortuguero, Sixaola region, etc.). It is very rare below 1000 m (and unknown below 400 m) on the Pac. Slope.

{Square-bracketed maxima pertain to "JS," whatever that means.}

Chamaedorea piscifolia Hodel, G. Herrera & Casc., Palm J. 137: 32, figs. 1--2. 1997.--Stems solitary, decumbent, ± rhizomatous proximally, to ca. 3 m long, ca. 0.5--0.7 cm diam. Lvs. in crown ca. 7--14. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 2--7 cm, the sheath tubular for most of length. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 15.5--26 X 5--8 cm, narrowly to broadly elliptic to oblanceolate, incised distally to ca. 1/5 the total length, with 10--13 primary lateral veins per side, the margins serrate, the apices ± caudate. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle ca. 9--18 cm, erect. Male infls. spicate; rachilla ca. 8--18 cm, erect; fls. ca. 1.5--2 mm long, greenish, the petals distinct nearly to base, very faintly nerved. Female infls. spicate; rachilla ca. 4--5.5 cm, erect; fls. ca. 2--2.5 mm long, greenish. Ripe frts. ca. 1.1--1.3 X 0.6--0.8 cm, smooth, oblong-ellipsoidal, black. Wet forests, 700--1200 m; Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca (Tarrazú, Dota). Fl. 11--12. ENDEMIC. [G. Herrera et al. 8788, CR.]

The lf.-blades of Chamaedorea piscifolia, simple and bifid only at the long-caudate apex, are unique among all Costa Rican palms. This species is also unusual in that the inflorescences are borne well below the lvs. on the prostrate, often buried portion of the stem (but see also C. rosibeliae). The only other Costa Rican Chamaedorea with which C. piscifolia could conceivably be confused is C. geonomiformis (see key, couplet 12), which shares a caulescent habit, small, simple lf.-blades with < 15 primary lateral veins per side, spicate infls. of both sexes, and a Pac. slope habitat.

Chamaedorea piscifolia is a narrow endemic not known to occur in any park or reserve. It also has considerable ornamental potential, and must therefore be considered highly threatened by commercial collectors, as well as by habitat destruction.

Chamaedorea pittieri L. H. Bailey, Gentes Herb. 6: 252, fig. 132. 1943. [C. hageniorum L. H. Bailey].--Stems solitary, obsolete to ca. 2.5 m tall, 1.0--3.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 6--10. Petioles beyond sheath 0.1--4 (--13) cm, the sheath deeply split distally, but tubular for > 1/2 its length, sometimes whitish and conspicuous. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 26--60 cm; lflts. 7--11 per side, 13--34 X 1.4--7.5 cm (medial ones), straight, ± coriaceous, with basal, abaxial callus. Infls. interfoliar; peduncle ca. 27--99 cm, erect to (male infls.) arching-pendulous. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 1.5--6 cm; rachillae 4--10, 10--29 cm, flexuous, drooping; fls. ca. 3--4 mm long, yellow, the petals distinct nearly to base, spreading distally, lightly nerved. Female infls. forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--3 cm; rachillae 2--4, 5--14 cm, erect-ascending; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, greenish yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 1.0--1.5 X 0.7--1.0 cm, smooth, ellipsoidal to obovoid, black. Wet forests, 1100--2400 m; Pac. slope Cord Talamanca (Dota, upper Río General valley, C. Chirripó). Fl. 1, 11--12. CR and extreme W Pan. (Chiriquí). [Hodel & Binder 1332, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea pittieri is a striking sp. by virtue of its thick, coarsely veined, often whitened petiole sheaths and thickish, plicate-veined, callus-based lflts. It belongs to a group of spp. centering on C. dammeriana (which see), from which C. pittieri differs substantially in its thickish foliage, larger lvs. with more numerous lflts., longer peduncles, larger male fls., and higher elevation habitat. It more resembles the very closely related C. anemophila (see key, couplet 44), a rare sp. of the Atl. slope, and is very similar vegetatively to the sympatric C. incrustata. (which see). Chamaedorea pittieri has also been compared with the habitally similar (though florally very different) C. parvifolia (see thereunder), with which it conceivably occurs sympatrically.

Chamedorea pittieri, not uncommon in W Pan., was rediscovered in Costa Rica by Maarten Kappelle (Kappelle & Monge 2859, CR) in 1988, after a hiatus of nearly 100 yrs.

Chamaedorea pumila H. Wendl., in Dammer, Gard. Chron. ser. 3, 36: 246. 1904. [C. minima Hodel; C. nana N. E. Br.; C. sullivaniorum Hodel & N. W. Uhl].--Stems solitary, erect to decumbent, obsolete to ca. 0.25 m tall, ca. 0.5--1.5 (--2.0) cm diam. Lvs. in crown 5--10. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 1--13.5 (--24) cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 10--39 (--42) X 4--13.5 (--15.5) cm, obovate to oblong or oblanceolate, incised distally 1/5--1/2+ the total length, with 6--17 (--22) primary lateral veins per side, the margins crenate to serrate, at least distally. Infls. interfoliar; peduncle 6--32 cm, erect-spreading. Male infls. forked (rarely) or racemosely branched; rachis ca. (0.2--) 0.5--5.5 (--9.5) cm; rachillae (2--) 3--10 (--18), (2.5--) 4.5--15 cm, spreading to recurved-drooping; fls. ca. 2.5--4.5 mm long, cream to yellow or greenish, the petals distinct nearly to base, incurved distally, nerveless. Female infls. spicate or (less commonly) forked or (rarely) racemosely branched; rachis 0--0.4 cm; rachilla(e) 1--2 (--3), 3.5--17 cm, ± recurved; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, greenish. Ripe frts. 0.5--0.9 X 0.4--0.8 cm, smooth, globose, black. Wet forests, (50--) 300--1500 (--2450) m; Atl. slope and near CD, all major cords, Pac. slope S from Tarrazú region. Fl. 1--5, 8, 10--12. CR to Pac. Col. [C. Chávez 602, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea pumila is an ornamental, dwarf, cloud-forest sp. characterized by its acaulescent habit, simple, bifid lf.-blades, and spicate or forked female infls. with the rachillae usually prominently recurved. The lvs. often have a characteristic coloration or sheen that has been described as mottled, livid, velvety, glaucescent, or iridescent. Simple-lvd. specimens of the allopatric C. pygmaea bear a very close resemblance to C. pumila (see key, couplet 5). However, C. pumila has been confused more frequently with sympatric, dwarf, simple-lvd. cloud-forest spp. such as C. palmeriana (which differs in being caulescent) and C. robertii (larger lvs. and spicate infls. of both sexes).

Chamaedorea pumila as here circumscribed is a highly variable species. Numerous Costa Rican collections, mainly from the Pac. slope, have been identified as C. sullivaniorum, a name based on Panamanian material distinguished from C. pumila in having less deeply bifid lf.-blades (to 1/3 the total length) with more numerous (15--16) primary lateral veins. The few Costa Rican collections that combine these features [e.g., G. Herrera et al. 8770 (CR, MO), from 1000 m in the Tarrazú region; Burger & Baker 10122 (CR) from 1000 m in the Fila Costeña] are indeed distinctive; however, these characters (depth of lf.-blade incision and number of primary lateral veins) vary independently throughout Costa Rica and Panama, and thus do not suffice (alone or together) to delimit a separate taxon.

Chamaedorea pumila has not been collected below 600 m on the Atl. slope; all collections from below 500 m are from the Pen. Osa.

Chamaedorea pygmaea H. Wendl., Allg. Gartenzeitung 20: 249. 1852. [C. terryorum Standl.].--Stems solitary, erect or decumbent, obsolete to 0.3 m tall, ca. 0.5--2.0 cm diam, ± bulbous at base. Lvs. in crown 3--8. Petioles beyond sheath 3.5--28 (--52) cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades simple and bifid or (more commonly) pinnately compound with rachis 6.5--32.5 (--51) cm, if simple ca. 12--25.5 X 7.7--21 cm, cuneate-obovate or oblong, incised distally to ca. 1/2 the total length, with 10--12 primary lateral veins per side, the margins serrate especially in distal half, if pinnate with lflts. 2--8 (--13) per side, 5.5--17.5 (--36) X 0.7--2.8 (--4.1) cm (medial ones), sigmoid. Infls. inter- or infrafoliar, basal; peduncle 11--51 (--94) cm, erect-ascending. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 2.3--11.7 (--18.5) cm; rachillae 5--20 (--38), 4--11 cm, slender, widely spreading or ± recurved or drooping; fls. ca. 1.5--2 (--3) mm long, yellow, the petals distinct nearly to base, nerveless. Female infls. spicate to forked or (infrequently) racemosely branched; rachis 0--2 (--11.5) cm; rachilla(e) 1--5 (--19), 3.5--7 (--9) cm; fls. 2.5--3 mm long, greenish. Ripe frts. 0.5--0.8 X 0.45--0.8 cm, smooth, ellipsoidal, purplish to black. Wet forests, ca. 1500--2300 m; Pac. slope Cord. Talamanca. Fl. 1, 6--9, 11. S Mex. (Oax.), CR to E Pan., Col. (Cord. Oriental). [Davidse et al. 28488, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea pygmaea is usually well distinguished by its acaulescent habit and pinnately compound lf.-blades with rather few (< 11) lflts. that are not gradually reduced toward the lf. apex (as is typically the case with similar spp. such as C. scheryi, C. stenocarpa, and C. undulatifolia). The most troublesome identification problem is an unanticipated one involving C. scheryi, mostly comprising very different-looking plants of Atl.-slope cloud-forests. Nonetheless, these two entities must now be regarded as questionably distinct; a large population at ca. 1700 m elevation along the Carretera Interamericana on the Valle de El General slope of Cerro de la Muerte [e.g., Hammel 18554 (INB, MO), Hodel & Binder 1354 (CR, MO)] seems to combine all their characteristics, and has every appearance of being a hybrid swarm. The square-bracketed maxima in the above description pertain to specimens from this population, assigned here somewhat arbitrarily on the basis of lflt. number.

Occasional simple-lvd. individuals of Chamaedorea pygmaea much resemble the allopatric C. pumila (see key, couplet 5).

Most Costa Rican collections of C. pygmaea (and all the typical ones) come from the vicinity of Las Alturas de Coto Brus, near the Panamanian border.

Chamaedorea robertii Hodel & N. W. Uhl, Principes 34: 120, figs. 1--3. 1990.--Stems solitary, at least partly decumbent, obsolete to 0.2 m (ours), ca. 0.8--2.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 4--10. Petioles beyond sheath 2--29 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only in basal 1/3. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, 20--47 X 13--24 cm, narrowly to broadly cuneate-obovate, incised distally to 2/5--1/2+ the total length, with 9--16 primary lateral veins per side, the margins serrate distally. Infls. inter- or (more commonly) infrafoliar, often basal; peduncle 9.5--29.5 cm, erect-ascending, with purplish bracts. Male infls. spicate; rachilla ca. 10--21.5 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2.5--4 mm long, cream-colored to light yellow, the petals connate in basal 1/2, erect distally, nerveless. Female infls. spicate; rachilla 3--8.5 cm, erect to curved; fls. ca. 1--1.5 mm long, greenish or light yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--0.9 X 0.6--0.9 cm, smooth, subglobose, black. Rain forests, 600--1400 m; Atl. slope and near CD, all major cords. Fl. 4--8, 10--11. CR to W cent. Pan. [Haber ex Bello C. 5874, CR {not!}, MO.]

This is the only acaulescent Costa Rican Chamaedorea sp. with simple lf.-blades and spicate male infls. It is further characterized by the purplish (in life) peduncular bracts of the female infls. Unfortunately, anthesis-stage infls. of either sex are seldom available. Vegetative or fruiting material might be easily confused with the sympatric C. deckeriana (caulescent, somewhat larger lf.-blades with more numerous primary lateral veins, orange ripe frts.) or C. pumila (see key, couplet 4).

This is a rare and seldom-collected sp. of very wet forests. It is better known in Panama, where it may often be caulescent.

Chamaedorea rosibeliae Hodel, G. Herrera & Casc., Palm J. 137: 43, fig. 10. 1997.--Stems solitary, decumbent, subrhizomatous, [0.3--2 (--3.5) m tall] and ca. 0.6 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 6. Petioles beyond sheath 3 cm, densely nodulose abaxially, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 13.5 cm, nodulose as petiole; lflts. 4 per side, to 10 X 3.5 cm (medial ones), strongly sigmoid. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle 4 cm, [ascending]. Male infls. spicate; rachilla 13 cm, [pendulous]; fls. ca. 2.0--2.5 mm long, yellowish, the petals distinct nearly to the base, faintly nerved. Female infls. unknown. Frts. unknown. Wet forests, 1190 m; Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca (Alto Urén). Fl. [1--9, 11--12]. ENDEMIC. [G. Herrera 3386, INB {holotype!}.]

Chamaedorea rosibeliae is best characterized by the densely nodulose abaxial surfaces of the petiole, lf.-rachis, and proximal portion of the lflts., unique within the genus. The infls. appear to be borne along the proximal, long-creeping portion of the stem, as in C. piscifolia. The distinct, faintly nerved petals of its male fls. ally C. rosibeliae with C. dammeriana (which see) and relatives. Indeed, except for its basal infls., very short peduncles, and spicate infls., this sp. bears a strong resemblance to Chamaedorea anemophila, with which it occurs sympatrically.

Chamaedorea rosibeliae is known only by the type collection, from a very remote site. Female plants are unknown, thus could not be included in the species key.

Chamaedorea rossteniorum Hodel, G. Herrera & Casc., Palm J. 137: 34, figs. 3--6. 1997.--Stems solitary, obsolete or to 50 cm tall, ca. 1.5--3.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 4--8. Petioles 12.5--48 cm, the sheath long-open. Lf.-blades simple and bifid, (37--) 47--96 X 14.5--27 cm, obovate to oblanceolate, incised distally to ca. 3/8--2/3 the total length, with 7--20 primary lateral veins per side, the margins subentire or obscurely toothed distally. Infls. interfoliar, basal; peduncle (29--) 72--172+ cm, erect. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 0.8--2.5 cm; rachillae 3--6, 15--27 cm, slender, spreading to drooping; fls. ca. 1.5--3 mm long, greenish yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, strongly nerved. Female infls. forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--6.5 cm; rachillae 2--7, 6--21.5 cm, ± erect; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, greenish yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.8--1.1 X 0.7--0.8 cm, smooth, broadly ellipsoidal or subglobose, black. Wet forests, (600--) 800--1900 m; both slopes Cord. Talamanca, Fila Costeña. Fl. 2, 11--12. CR to W cent. Pan. [Zamora et al. 1428, CR, MO.]

Among Costa Rican Chamaedorea spp. with an acaulescent habit and simple, bifid lf.-blades, C. rossteniorum is both the largest and the only one in which the male fls. have apically connate, strongly nerved petals.

This is a rare and local sp., only recently discovered in Costa Rica. It is rather widespread on the Pac. slope (Candelaria, Tarrazú, Acosta, Pérez Zeledón); the more localized Atl. slope population (PN Barbilla; G. Herrera 8746, CR) comprises plants with ± thinner and proportionately broader lf.-blades.

Chamaedorea scheryi L. H. Bailey, Gentes Herb. 6: 252, fig. 133. 1943.--Stems solitary, obsolete to ca. 0.5 m tall and ca. 1.5--4.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--6 (--9). Petioles beyond sheath (14--) 22--61 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis (31--) 40--88 cm; lflts. (4--) 14--22 per side, 12.5--40 X 1.2--5.1 cm (medial ones), ± straight to slightly sigmoid, with satiny sheen abaxially. Infls. inter- or (less frequently) infrafoliar, often basal; peduncle 24--102 cm, erect. Male infls. racemosely or (less commonly) subpaniculately branched; rachis 5.5--26 cm; rachillae 15--65+, 3--17 cm, slender, diverging at ± right angles; fls. ca. 1.5--3 mm long, yellow-green, the petals distinct nearly to base, erect-spreading, nerveless. Female infls. forked to (most commonly) racemosely or (rarely) subpaniculately branched; rachis 0--7.7 (--13+) cm; rachillae 2--18 (--29+), 4--17 cm, erect; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, green. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--0.8 X 0.4--0.5 cm, smooth, ellipsoidal, black. Rain forests, 600--2050 m; Atl. slope Cords. Tilarán, Central, and Talamanca, Pac. slope S Cord. Talamanca (ZP Las Tablas). Fl. 2--5, 8--12. CR to W cent. Pan. [Grayum 10376, INB, MO.]

Chamaedorea scheryi is normally well distinguished by its acaulescent habit, pinnately compound lf.-blades with ca. 14--20 lflts. per side, basal, long-pedunculate infls., and Atl. cloud-forest habitat. The plants are larger in most dimensions that those of other sp. with ± similar characteristics, e.g., C. pygmaea, C. stenocarpa, and C. undulatifolia. Compare especially the last-mentioned sp., with which C. scheryi occurs sympatrically. An unexpected identification problem involving the exclusively Pac. slope C. pygmaea is discussed thereunder. Incomplete material of C. scheryi could be confused with C. costaricana (which differs substantially in its caulescent, cespitose habit and ligulate petioles) or C. macrospadix (with very different male fls.).

Chamaedorea stenocarpa Standl. & Steyerm., Publ. Field Mus. Nat. Hist., Bot. Ser. 23: 206. 1947.--Stems solitary, creeping, to 0.15 m long, 0.5--1.5 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--6. Petioles beyond sheath 5--30 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 13.5--32 cm; lflts. 11--19 per side, 4.5--13 X 0.4--1.7 cm (medial ones), ± straight or slightly sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar, often basal; peduncle 8--29 cm, erect or spreading. Male infls. racemosely or (rarely) subpaniculately branched; rachis (0.8--) 3.5--7.5 (--11) cm; rachillae (4--) 8--47, 2--10.5 cm, filiform, ± spreading; fls. ca. 2--2.5 mm long, greenish, the petals briefly connate basally, speading distally, nerveless. Female infls. spicate or (less commonly) forked; rachilla(e) 6.5--12.5 cm, straight or slightly curved; fls. ca. 1.5--2.5 mm long, light green. Ripe frts. to ca. 1.0 X 1.0 cm, smooth, ± globose, black. Wet forests, ca. 900--1500 m; Pac. slope Cord. Tilarán, Fila Costeña. Fl. 5; Fr. 12. Guat., CR to W cent. Pan. [Hammel 19206, INB.]

Chamaedorea stenocarpa, an enigmatic and poorly known sp. throughout its range, is characterized by its acaulescent habit, small stature, and pinnately compound lf.-blades with ca. 12--19 lflts. per side, these gradually reduced toward the lf. apex. It is perhaps most apt to be confused with C. pygmaea (which see), which occurs at somewhat higher elevations on the Pac. slope; the last-mentioned species differs inter alia in having fewer lflts., generally longer peduncles, and shorter female rachillae. Even more similar is the Atl.-slope C. undulatifolia, which differs from C. stenocarpa in its somewhat larger size and more numerous (usually 2--6) female rachillae (see key, couplet 20). Some male specimens of C. stenocarpa may key to C. binderi, but the latter sp. tends to have longer petioles and lflts. and shorter male infl. rachises and rachillae.

As noted by Hodel (1992: 200), Guatemalan material of Chamaedorea stenocarpa differs slightly from collections from Costa Rican and Panama in having more elongate frts. The application of the name to our material should be considered only tentative.

Chamaedorea tepejilote Liebm., in Mart., Hist. nat. palm. 308. 1849. [C. casperiana Klotzsch; C. exorrhiza H. Wendl. ex Guillaumin; C. wendlandiana (Oerst.) Hemsl.].--Stems solitary (sometimes apparently cespitose), mostly 0.5--5 m tall and 2.0--7.0 cm diam, usually with conspicuous prop-roots at base. Lvs. in crown 3--7. Petioles beyond sheath 18--61 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 70--140 cm; lflts. 12--23+ per side, 25--63 X 2.2--10.5 cm (medial ones), sigmoid. Infls. infrafoliar; peduncle 7.5--23 (--38.5) cm, erect-spreading. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 5--20.5 cm; rachillae ca. 11--50+, 6--18.5 cm, spreading or pendulous; fls. ca. 1.5--2 mm long, white to pale yellowish, the petals essentially distinct, suberect, nerveless or obscurely nerved. Female infls. racemosely or (rarely) subpaniculately branched; rachis 2.3--27.5 cm; rachillae (3--) 5--40, 2.5--22 cm, straight or flexuous; fls. ca. 1--2 mm long, white to greenish, with disagreeable odor. Ripe frts. ca. 0.8--1.6 X 0.5--0.8 cm, smooth, narrowly to broadly ellipsoidal to obovoid, black. Wet and rain forests, 0--1600 m; entire Atl. slope and near CD, Pac. slope Cord. Guanacaste and S from Pen. Nicoya (RNA Cabo Blanco, RNVS Curú) and RB Carara. Fl. 1--6, 8--9, 12. S Mex. (Oax., Ver.) to Pac. Col. (Valle). [Morales et al. 1856, INB, MO.]

Chamaedorea tepejilote may be broadly characterized by its stoutly caulescent, solitary habit, large, pinnately compound lf.-blades with ± numerous (> 11 per side), relatively broad lflts., and infrafoliar, rather short-pedunculate, racemosely branched infls. The stems often develop conspicuous basal prop-roots. Running along the abaxial side of the petiole and lf.-rachis is a yellowish stripe which, while evident in certain other Costa Rican Chamaedorea spp., is never so pronounced. Furthermore, the primary lateral lf. veins dry yellowish on the abaxial surface.

Chamaedorea tepejilote belongs to a species-group characterized by very densely flowered, catkin-like male infls.; it is the only Costa Rican member of this group (also including C. crucensis, C. deckeriana, C. hodelii, C. robertii, and C. zamorae) in which the infls. (of both sexes) are racemosely branched (but see also C. graminifolia).

Although this species generally appears to have solitary stems, it has occasionally been reported as cespitose. The plants sometimes grow in ± dense, nearly pure stands, and thus may appear cespitose even if rhizomatous connections are lacking.

The upper elevational limit for C. tepejilote in Costa Rica is attained in the Monteverde region (Cord. Tilarán). This population is also noteworthy in having exceptionally large infls. with very numerous rachillae.

Chamaedorea tepejilote has a number of economic attributes. It is sometimes cult. as an ornamental in Costa Rica and elsewhere, though not to the extent of C. costaricana. The unopened male infls. are edible when cooked, and the sp. has been cult. and even selected for this purpose in other countries. The somewhat bitter palmito is also esteemed.

Chamaedorea undulatifolia Hodel & N. W. Uhl, Principes 34: 116, figs. 10--13. 1990.--Stems solitary, erect to briefly decumbent, obsolete to ca. 0.15 m, ca. 1.0--2.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--6. Petioles beyond sheath 2.5--61 cm, the sheath splitting deeply, tubular only near base. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 19.5--64 cm; lflts. 14--22 per side, 5.5--24.5 X 0.8--3.8 cm (medial ones), slightly sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar (sometimes becoming infrafoliar), frequently basal; peduncle 14--56.5 cm, erect. Male infls. racemosely or subpaniculately branched; rachis ca. 5--12.5 cm; rachillae ca. 13--27, 2--10 cm, ± spreading; fls. ca. 1--1.5 mm long, greenish, the petals nerveless. Female infls. spicate to forked or racemosely branched; rachis 0--5.7 cm; rachillae (1--) 2--6 (--11), 4--9.5 cm, strongly curved; fls. ca. 2--3 mm long, pale yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 0.5--0.9 X 0.4--0.8 cm, smooth, subglobose to ellipsoidal, black. Rain forests, 700--1850+ m; Atl. slope and near CD, all major cords. Fl. 2--6, 8--9, 11--12. ENDEMIC. [G. Herrera 8491, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea undulatifolia, found only in the wettest Atl. slope cloud-forests, is distinguished by its acaulescent habit, pinnately compound lf.-blades with ca. 14--22 lflts. per sidegradually reduced toward the lf. apex, and ± strongly curved female rachillae. It is intermediate in size between the two most similar species: the generally larger, sympatric C. scheryi (which has more numerous and longer rachillae of both sexes, with the female rachillae straight), and the smaller, Pac.-slope C. stenocarpa (see key, couplet 20). In life, C. undulatifolia is additionally distinctive in having (as implied in the epithet) undulate-margined lflts; however, this feature is not appreciable on dried specimens.

Although highly ornamental, Chamaedorea undulatifolia is, like most cloud-forest spp., very difficult to maintain in cult.

The name Chamaedorea microphylla H. Wendl. was misapplied by Standley (Fl. of Costa Rica) to this species and C. stenocarpa.

Chamaedorea warscewiczii H. Wendl., Bonplandia 10: 37. 1862. [C. flavovirens sensu L. H. Bailey in Woodson & Schery, Fl. Panama. 1943 (non H. Wendl.); C. latipinna L. H. Bailey].--Stems solitary, ca. 1--2.5 m tall, ca. 1.5--3.0+ cm diam. Lvs. in crown 4--8. Petioles beyond sheath 10--53 cm, the sheath tubular. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis 37.5--62 cm; lflts. (3--) 4--7 per side, 17--37 X 3.5--13 cm (medial ones), broadly sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar (often becoming infrafoliar); peduncle 20--76 cm, erect-arching. Male infls. racemosely branched; rachis 2--10.5 cm; rachillae 7--26, 11--32 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 2.5--4 mm long, greenish yellow, the petals connate distally and basally, nerved. Female infls. racemosely or subpaniculately branched; rachis 1.8--10.5 cm; rachillae 5--18, (5--) 7--22 cm, slender, ± curved-spreading; fls. ca. 2--3.5 mm long, greenish white. Ripe frts. ca. 1.0--1.4 X 0.6--1.0 cm, smooth, ellipsoidal, black. Wet forests, 400--1050 m; entire Atl. slope, Pac. slope Cord. Guanacaste. Fl. 2, 4--5, 9--10, 12. (Guat.?), CR to E Pan. [C. Moraga 279, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea warscewiczii, with the petals of its male fls. connate apically and strongly nerved, belongs to the group of spp. centered on C. pinnatifrons (which see). It may be broadly characterized by its caulescent habit, pinnately compound lvs. with rather few, broadly sigmoid, thickly chartaceous lflts., racemosely branched infls. of both sexes, and comparatively large frts. In life, the primarly lf. veins are sharply elevated adaxially, a feature not generally appreciable on dried material. Fruiting females are distinctive in tending to have all the rachillae curved in the same direction.

The sp. most similar to C. warscewiczii is the allopatric (Pac. lowlands) C. matae (see key, couplet 50), which might just as well be considered a subsp. Male material, in particular, may be difficult to separate from the widespread C. pinnatifrons (see key, couplet 32).

Chamaedorea zamorae Hodel, Principes 34: 173, figs. 17--21. 1990 [C. crucensis Hodel].--Stems solitary, 1--2.5 m tall, ca. 1.0--2.0 cm diam. Lvs. in crown 3--12. Petioles beyond sheath 10--40 cm, the sheath split ca. halfway to base or slightly more. Lf.-blades simple and bifid or (more commonly) pinnately compound with rachis 25--81 cm, if simple 44.5--83 X 25--41 cm, cuneate-obovate, incised distally to ca. 2/5 the total length, with ca. 15--40 primary lateral veins per side, the margins ± obscurely to sharply serrate distally, if pinnate with lflts. 3--9 per side, 24.5--55 X 1.8--9.8 cm (medial ones), weakly sigmoid. Infls. interfoliar (often becoming infrafoliar), sometimes basal; peduncle 10--34 cm, erect. Male infls. spicate or forked; rachilla(e) 14--27 cm, pendulous; fls. ca. 3--5 mm long, cream-white to yellow, the petals distinct to base, spreading distally to erect, nerveless or 1--keeled. Female infls. spicate; rachilla 3--18.5 cm, erect; fls. ca. 2.5--3 mm long, yellow. Ripe frts. ca. 1.1--1.5 X 0.9--1.4 cm, smooth, obpyramidal, densely packed, orange to red-orange. Wet forests, 50--500 (--800) m; Pac. slope S from RB Carara. Fl. 1, 7, 11--12 ENDEMIC. [A. Chacón 1082, CR, MO.]

Chamaedorea zamorae and C. geonomiformis are the only Chamaedorea spp. in the Pac. lowlands (< ca. 1000 m) of Costa Rica with spicate or forked infls. of both sexes. The latter sp. is not closely related, and differs in its much smaller, invariably simple lf.-blades with fewer (ca. 9--13) primary lateral veins, and less crowded infls. and infrs. Chamaedorea zamorae, with lf.-blades varying from simple to fully pinnately compound, belongs to a sp.-group characterized by densely aggregated male fls. borne on usually lax, catkin-like rachillae (see under C. tepejilote). Simple-lvd. individuals most resemble the Atl.-slope C. deckeriana (see key, couplet 9). Pinnate-lvd. plants are most similar to the Atl. slope C. hodelii (with black frts.) and, especially, the Pac. slope C. crucensis (see key, couplet 39), of higher elevations, which also has orange frts.

The type of Chamaedorea zamorae was prepared from cult. material, grown in Hawaii from seed allegedly collected near Laguna de Arenal, on the Atl. slope in Prov. Guanacaste. This provenance must be considered highly dubious, in view of the presently known distribution of the species.

Cocos

The genus Cocos typifies the tribe Cocoeae, commonly known as the "cocoid" palms, characterized by having three or more well-defined endocarp pores (e.g., the "eyes" of the coconut) and a comparatively large, frequently woody and expanded peduncular bract (often referred to as the spathe). The other genera of this group occurring in Costa Rica are Acrocomia, Aiphanes, Astrocaryum, Attalea, Bactris, Desmoncus, and Elaeis. 1 sp., pantropical but probably originally from W Pac. and E Ind. Oceans (Philipp. or Austral.).

Glassman, S. F. 1987. Revisions of the palm genus Syagrus Mart. and other selected genera in the Cocos alliance. Illinois Biol. Monogr. 56: 1--230.

Richardson, D. L., H. C. Harries & E. Balsevicius. 1978. Variedades de cocoteros en Costa Rica. Turrialba 28: 87--90.

Cocos nucifera L., Sp. pl. 1188. 1753. COCOTERO--Stems erect to curved (often decumbent at base), robust and usually arborescent, solitary, ca. 2--20 (--30+) m tall and 20--45 cm diam., unarmed. Petioles beyond sheath to ca. 2 m, unarmed, the sheath fibrous and disintegrating into a reticulum, becoming open. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, ca. 2--6 m long, the lflts. ca. 75--125 per side, ± equal, linear, regularly spaced and arranged in a single plane, acute apically, with abundant, dotlike scales abaxially. Plants monoecious, the infls. bisexual, interfoliar. Prophyll tomentose, becoming fibrous, ± obscured by petiole sheath. Peduncle ca. 40 cm long, with 1 very large, basal bract (spathe) ca. 1 m long, thick, woody, expanding. Infls. racemosely branched, ca. 100--200 cm long Fls. unisexual, borne in inconspicuously bracteate triads (0--few basally on rachillae) or solitary male fls. (distally). Male fls. ca. 0.9--1.3 cm long, pale yellow, fragrant, with 3 distinct sepals and 3 much longer, distinct petals; stamens 6, distinct. Female fls. ca. 1.5--2.1 cm long, broadly ovoid, with 3 distinct, ± sepals and 3 distinct petals; staminodia connate in a low, membranous, truncate ring; pistil 1, 3-locular; stigmas 3, very short, borne in a slight depression. Ripe frts. ca. 20--30+ X 12--20 cm, smooth, ± ovoid, greenish to brownish or orange, with very thick, fibrous mesocarp and apical stigmatic residue. Wet forests (ocean beaches), 0--5 m (--1000+ m in cult.); entire Atl. slope, more sporadic on Pac. slope S from vic. Puntarenas, PN Isla del Coco. Fl. 1--12. Pantropical. [Lent L-176, USJ.]

The familiar coconut palm is always easily recognized by its arborescent habit, solitary, often curving stems, lack of spines, large, pinnately compound lf.-blades with very numerous, narrow lflts., very large frts. (the largest among all New World palms), and strand habitat (except some cult. plants). The only species in Costa Rica with which it might sometimes be confused (especially from a distance) is Attalea butyracea, which comprises relatively stouter plants with much smaller frts. and grows in drier, usually non-maritime habitats.

The "wild" Atlantic and Pacific coast populations of Cocos nucifera in Costa Rica arrived from opposite directions, and differ morphologically. The "Pacific Tall," or "Panama Tall" race has somewhat taller, more erect, smoother trunks, an umbrella-shaped (as opposed to ± spherical) crown, and more spherical frts. with a thinner mesocarp (husk) and larger nut. It arrived, from the cent. and W Pac. Ocean, before the "Atlantic Tall," or "Jamaica Tall" race, which came from W. Afr. and the W. Ind. Ocean. The nuts of the Atl. race, with less fluid and a thicker endosperm than those of the Pac. race, yield more copra; export of the latter commodity is thus centered in the Limón region. Yet a third wild race, with smaller, ± oblate nuts, may occur on I. del Coco. Numerous other cultivars are grown on a local basis.

The grated endosperm of the ripe nuts (cocos) of C. nucifera is utilized in Costa Rica to flavor baked goods and candies or, on the Atl. coast, to make coconut milk for main dishes (rice and beans con pollo). Also, in the latter region, coconut oil is much used in cooking. Perhaps even more highly relished are the unripe frts. (pipas), the refreshing fluid of which is drunk through a straw; certain varieties are favored for this purpose. The palmito is edible, and very tasty.

Colpothrinax

3 spp., Guat., Bel., Hond., CR--Pan., W Cuba.

Evans, R. J. 1998. A revision of Colpothrinax (Palmae). Palms (in press).

Read, R. W. 1969. Colpothrinax Cookii--a new species from Central America. Principes 13: 13--22.

Colpothrinax dressleri R. J. Evans, Principes (in press). 1998.--Stems erect, subarborescent to arborescent, solitary, 4--20 m tall and 15--30 cm diam., unarmed. Petioles beyond sheath 10--130 (--400) cm, unarmed, densely scaly, with a conspicuous, semicircular adaxial hastula ca. 2 X 3.5--4 cm, the sheath densely tomentose, weathering to persistent, reddish brown fibers. Lf.-blades palmately ± deeply and irregularly divided into bifid segments, ca. 90--170 X 160--230 cm, with short midrib ca. 6--8 cm, adaxially glossy, abaxially densely and minutely whitish scaly. Plants hermaphroditic, the infls. interfoliar. Prophyll short, densely scaly. Peduncle to ca. 50--60 cm, densely tomentose, with ca. 5 densely reddish tomentose bracts. Infls. paniculately branched to 4 orders, shorter than the lvs., the axes reddish brown- or purplish tomentose; main axis ca. 1 m long, bracteate to apex; secondary axes relatively short (to ca. 40 cm). Fls. bisexual, ca. 2--3.5 mm long, rose-red, spirally arranged in minutely bracteate clusters of solitary, sessile fls. on low spurs. Sepals connate in subtruncate (3-pointed) cup. Petals 3, connate basally in a tube. Stamens 6, the filaments connate basally in a cup. Pistils 3 (just one developing to frt.), the styles connate, elongate; stigmas punctate. Ripe frts. ca. 1.3--2.2 X 1.4--2.2 cm, smooth, broadly ellipsoidal to obovoid, black, with apical stigmatic residue. Wet forests, 700--1000 m; Atl. slope Cords. Guanacaste (vic. Lago de Cote) and Talamanca (Alto Urén), Pac. slope cent. Fila Costeña (Fila Chonta). Fl. 1--2, 8--9, 11--12 (Pan.); Fr. 7. SE Nic. to E cent. Pan. [A. Chacón 290, CR, INB.]

Colpothrinax and Sabal are the only Costa Rican fan-palm genera that do not have either spiny petiole margins (cf. Acoelorraphe) or branching root-spines on the trunk (cf. Cryosophila). Colpothrinax is easily told from the coastal Sabal by its upland habit and petiole sheaths weathering to a reddish brown, fibrous reticulum, and comparatively narrow infls. (see genus key, couplet 4, for additional distinctions). Though rare and very local at remote stations in Costa Rica, Colpothrinax dressleri is widespread and frequently collected in Panama. The plants appear to flower ± continously, and as many as 7 or more infls. at various stages may be found in successive lf.-axils of the same individual.

Cryosophila

Stems erect, slender and brief to robust and arborescent, solitary, armed at least basally with often branched root-spines. Petioles beyond sheath elongate, unarmed, splitting basally in reproductively mature individuals (ours), with a usually short, ± triangular, adaxial hastula, the sheath densely floccose, becoming ± fibrous. Lf.-blades deeply divided (often to base) in 2 halves, each ± deeply palmately divided by 2 orders of splitting, the ultimate segments briefly bifid, a midrib lacking, abaxially whitish- to silvery-tomentulose. Plants hermaphroditic, the infls. interfoliar. Prophyll short, lanceolate, tomentose. Peduncle short, densely floccose, with 2--10 inflated, densely tomentose, ± persistent bracts. Infls. racemosely (C. cookii) or paniculately branched, emerging through split petiole base, shorter than the lvs. Fls. bisexual, bracteolate, solitary, briefly pedicellate, white to cream-colored. Sepals 3, briefly connate basally. Petals 3, distinct. Stamens 6, the filaments connate in a tube in basal (1/8--) 1/4--3/4. Pistils 3 (just one developing to frt.), distinct; styles elongate, exserted; stigmas slightly wider than styles. Ripe frts. smooth, globose to ovoid or ellipsoid, white or whitish, with apical stigmatic residue. 10 spp., Mex. (Nay., Sin.) to NW Col.

This is the only fan-palm genus that is widespread in Costa Rica and likely to be encountered; Acoelorraphe, Colpothrinax, and Sabal are all very local. Cryosophila is unique among these genera in having branched root-spines on the trunk (though the trunks of Acoelorraphe are armed by the spiny, persistent petiole bases), in having the lf.-blades split centrally nearly or quite to the base, and also in having pure white (rather than black or blackish) ripe frts. Costa Rica and Panama, with four species apiece, lie at the center of distribution for this small genus; two of our species are endemic, and another very nearly so.

Although Cryosophila species may be difficult to distinguish morphologically (especially in vegetative condition), ours can be identified with fair certainty from geographic evidence alone: C. guagara on the Pac. slope, C. warscewiczii on the Atl. slope. Each slope also harbors one additional, very rare species (C. grayumii and C. cookii, respectively), but these are not likely to be encountered.

Evans, R. J. 1995. Systematics of Cryosophila (Palmae). Syst. Bot. Monogr. 46: 1--70.

1 Stems (7--) 11--14 m tall and (11--) 14--16 (--20) cm diam; root-spines mostly > 20 cm; hastula 3.0--7.4 cm long; lf.-blades split centrally to within 11--40 cm of base, each half with 33--40 ribs; infl. racemosely branched (i.e., with all rachillae attached directly to the main axis); very local, 0--100 m, Atl. slope... C. cookii

1' Stems 0.7--10 (--12) m tall and 3.9--12.7 (--15) cm diam; root-spines mostly < 20 cm (sometimes a few > 20 cm); hastula 0.7--2.3 cm long; lf.-blades split centrally to within 0.5--7.0 (--10.5) cm of base, each half with (18--) 20--36 ribs; infls. subpaniculately to paniculately branched (i.e., with at least some rachillae borne on stalked side-branches); widespread, 0--800 m, both slopes

2 Lf.-blades with each half divided into 6--11 (--13) primary sectors; infl. rachis with most bracts (except a few basal ones) promptly caducous; first-order infl. branches ca. 1.5--22 cm; rachillae ca. 5--13.8 cm; ripe frts. 2.0--2.6 X 1.8--2.3 cm; Atl. slope...C. warscewiczii

2' Lf.-blades with each half divided into 4--8 (--9) primary sectors; infl. rachis with many bracts long-persistent (even to ripe frt.); first-order infl. branches ca. 0.1--6.9 (--8.4) cm; rachillae ca. 1.5--6.8 cm; ripe frts. ca. 1.2--2.0 X 1.0--1.9 cm; Pac. slope

3 Stems 0.7--4.9 m tall and 5--8.8 cm diam; hastula 0.7--1.0 (--1.2) cm long; lf.-blades ca. (45--) 56--80 cm long, split centrally to within (0.5--) 1.0 (--2.0) cm of base, each half with (18--) 21--23 (--25) ribs and 4--5 (--6) primary sectors, none [except for anterior 1 (--2)] secondarily divided; cross-veins inconspicuous adaxially; infl. rachis 6--16 cm, with 12--18 (--22) bracts; first-order infl. branches and rachillae both < 4 cm; stigma + style 1.2--2.3 (--2.8) mm... C. grayumii

3' Stems (3--) 6--10 (--11) m tall and (7--) 8.3--12.7 cm diam; hastula (0.9--) 1.2--2.1 cm; lf.-blades ca. 83.5--138 cm long, split centrally to within 2.0--7.0 (--10.5) cm of base, each half with 22--36 ribs and 5--8 (--9) primary sectors, all (except for posterior 1) secondarily divided; cross-veins conspicuous adaxially; infl. rachis 27--71 cm, with 22--36 bracts; first-order infl. branches and rachillae both to > 4 cm; stigma + style (1.3--) 2.1--5.1 mm... C. guagara

Cryosophila cookii Bartlett, Publ. Carnegie Inst. Wash. 461: 39, t. 10--12. 1935.--Stems (7--) 11--14 m tall and (11--) 14--16 (--20) cm diam. Petioles ca. 1.4--3.0 m; hastula 3.0--7.4 cm long, broadly to ± narrowly triangular. Lf.-blades ca. (80--) 90--157 X (135--) 152--265 cm, split centrally to within 11.0--40.0 cm of base, each half with 33--40 ribs and divided into 6--8 primary sectors, all (except marginal 1) secondarily divided; cross-veins conspicuous adaxially. Peduncle 47.5--81.5 cm, with 8--10 bracts. Infls. racemosely branched; rachis 25.0--46.5 cm, with ca. 15 mostly promptly caducous bracts; rachillae ca. 2.5--8.0 cm, densely fastigiate and spiraled around the rachis. Fls. (sepals) 3.7--5.3 mm. Stigma + style 2.7--3.5 mm. Ripe frts. ca. 2.0--2.2 X 1.3--1.5 cm, ellipsoidal. Wet forests, 0--100 m; cent. Atl. slope S from PN Tortuguero. Fl. 5--6, 8. ENDEMIC. [Evans 133, INB, MO.]

The racemosely branched infls. of Cryosophila cookii, with all the rachillae attached directly to the main axis, are unique within the genus. This species is further distinguished from C. warscewiczii, the only congener with which it occurs sympatrically, by its generally larger size; longer hastulae; lf.-blades more shallowly split centrally and with more numerous ribs and much more conspicuous cross-veins; and somewhat shorter rachillae, longer fls., and smaller frts.

Cryosophila cookii, one of the most endangered Mesoamerican palms, was only known to Evans (1995) by ca. 100 individuals, scattered across an unprotected and largely deforested area between Siquirres and PN Tortuguero. More recently, a much larger population was discovered in RNVS. Gandoca-Manzanillo, in southeasternmost Costa Rica.

Cryosophila grayumii R. J. Evans, Syst. Bot. Monogr. 46: 42, figs. 3b, 5b, 9b, 14d, 15b. 1995.--Stems 0.7--4.9 m tall and 5--8.8 cm diam. Petioles ca. 0.4--2.2 m; hastula 0.7--1.0 (--1.2) cm long, broadly triangular. Lf.-blades ca. (45--) 56--80 X 100--150 cm, split centrally to within (0.5--) 1.0 (--2.0) cm of base, each half with (18--) 21--23 (--25) ribs and divided into 4--5 (--6) primary sectors, only the anterior 1 (--2) secondarily divided; cross-veins inconspicuous adaxially. Peduncle 13.5--33.5 cm, with 2--3 bracts. Infls. subpaniculately to paniculately branched; rachis 6--16 cm, with 12--18 (--22) bracts, some persistent even to frt.; first-order branches 0.1--3.8 cm; rachillae ca. 1.5--3.4 cm. Fls. (sepals) (2.4--) 2.9--4.4 mm. Stigma + style 1.2--2.3 (--2.8) mm. Ripe frts. 1.2--2.0 X 1.0--1.6 cm, ovoid to ± globose. Wet forests, 0--650 m; very local, Pac. slope Cord. Tilarán and S from RB Carara. Fl. 1, 7, 12. ENDEMIC. [Grayum & Schmidt 10108, CR, INB, MO.]

Cryosophila grayumii comprises the smallest plants, in all respects, of any Costa Rican Cryosophila species. It is additionally distinctive in its sparingly split lf.-blades, with most of the 4--5 (--6) primary sectors of each half undivided, and also has the fewest peduncular bracts (2--3) in the genus (though these are extremely difficult to count). With the partly sympatric C. guagara, C. grayumii shares ± persistent infl.-rachis bracts and comparatively short first-order infl. branches and rachillae; otherwise, the two species are abundantly distinct (see key, couplet 3).

This rare, local, and endemic species is presently known from just seven smallish, widely scattered populations, just two of which (in RB Carara and ZP Cerros de La Cangreja) are protected. Most or all of these stations are on limestone.

Cryosophila guagara P. H. Allen, Ceiba 3: 174, figs. 2--3. 1953. GUÁGARA, SÚRTUBA--Stems (3--) 6--10 (--11) m tall and (7--) 8.3--12.7 cm diam. Petioles ca. 1.1--3.3 m; hastula (0.9--) 1.2--2.1 cm long, very broadly triangular. Lf.-blades ca. 83.5--138 X 120--200 cm, split centrally to within 2.0--7.0 (--10.5) cm of base, each half with 22--36 ribs and divided into 5--8 (--9) primary sectors, all (except posterior 1) secondarily divided; cross-veins conspicuous adaxially. Peduncle 28.0--65.5 cm, with 6--10 bracts. Infls. paniculately branched; rachis 27--71 cm, with 23--36 bracts, many persistent to frt.; first-order branches ca. 0.2--6.9 (--8.4) cm; rachillae ca. 1.5--6.8 cm. Fls. (sepals) 2.5--4.4 (--4.9) mm. Stigma + style (1.3--) 2.1--5.1 mm. Ripe frts. 1.3--2.0 X 1.1--1.9 cm, ovoid to ± globose. Wet forests, 0--500+ m; Pac. slope S from RB Carara. Fl. 7, 10. CR and extreme W Pan. (Chiriquí). [Evans et al. 126, INB, MO.]

This is the only common Cryosophila species on the Pac. slope of Costa Rica (but see also the rare C. grayumii), and the only species known from Pen. Osa. It is distinctive in the large overall size of the plants, and in having very conspicuous adaxial cross-veins on the lf.-blades and a rather long stigma + style. In all of these respects, C. guagara most closely resembles the rare, Atl. slope C. cookii; however, the latter differs in having longer hastulae, lf.-blades more shallowly split centrally, and racemosely branched infls. with the rachis bracts. mostly promptly caducous. In its infl. structure, C. guagara is similar to C. grayumii, which is smaller in every respect and has inconspuous cross-veins on the adaxial laminar surface (see key, couplet 3).

The lvs. of Cryosophila guagara are used for thatching on the Pen. Osa [fide Thomsen 803 (CR)]. The palmito is eaten roasted.

Cryosophila warscewiczii (H. Wendl.) Bartlett, Publ. Carnegie Inst. Wash. 461: 38. 1935. [Acanthorrhiza warscewiczii H. Wendl., Gartenflora 18: 242. 1869; C. albida Bartlett].--Stems (1--) 3--6 (--12) m tall and 3.9--11.8 (--15) cm diam. Petioles ca. 0.6--2.7 m; hastula 1.0--2.3 cm long, broadly triangular. Lf.-blades ca. 58--114 X 100--190 cm, split centrally to within 0.5--4.5 cm of base, each half with 20--34 ribs and divided into 6--11 (--13) primary sectors, the anterior ones secondarily divided, the posterior ones less divided to undivided; cross veins usually inconspicuous adaxially. Peduncle 26.5--64 cm, with (3--) 4--7 bracts. Infls. paniculately branched; rachis 12--61.5 cm, with 16--31 (--40) mostly promptly caducous bracts; first-order branches ca. 1.5--22 cm; rachillae ca. 5--13.8 cm. Fls. (sepals) 2.5--4.6 mm. Stigma + style 1.5--2.7 (--3.0) mm. Ripe frts. 2.0--2.6 X 1.7--2.3 cm, ovoid to ± globose. Wet forests, 0--900 m; entire Atl. slope. Fl. 4, 7--8. SE Nic. to E Pan. [Evans 163, INB, MO.]

Cryosophila warscewiczii is the most widespread species of its genus in Costa Rica, and the only one likely to be encountered on the Atl. slope (see also the very local C. cookii). It may be recognized by its moderately large size, adaxially inconspicuous laminar cross-veins, and open-paniculate infls. and (especially) infrs. with promptly caducous rachis-bracts. It has the longest first-order infl. branches and longest rachillae of any Costa Rican Cryosophila, as well as the largest frts.

The lvs. of this species are used to make brooms in the Tortuguero region [fide Robles 2127 (CR)].

Desmoncus MATAMBA

Stems erect (D. stans) to scandent and very elongate, slender, cespitose, armed with terete spines. Petioles spiny, the sheath with ± well developed ocrea (i.e., prolonged above petiole insertion). Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis usually ± spiny and prolonged distally into a long appendage (cirrus) bearing rigid, retrorse acanthophylls (modified lflts.), or cirrus filamentous and lacking acanthophylls (D. stans); lflts. ± equal, ± regularly or irregularly spaced and arranged in a single plane, often spinose or spinulose on major veins abaxially, rarely (D. stans) cirrhose apically, with ± conspicuous reticulate cross-veins. Plants monoecious, the infls. bisexual, interfoliar. Prophyll thin, persistent, partially included in petiole sheath. Peduncle ± elongate, slender, with 1 unarmed or spiny, thick, persistent bract (spathe) inserted far above the prophyll. Infls. spicate (D. stans) or racemosely branched. Fls. unisexual, ± spirally arranged in inconspicuously bracteate triads (basally on rachillae) or solitary or paired male fls.(distally). Male fls. with sepals connate in 3-lobed cup and 3 distinct petals; stamens [6--9], ± adnate basally to petals. Female fls. with sepals connate in obscurely 3-lobed cup and petals connate in truncate or shallowly 3-lobed tube; staminodia 6, minute, toothlike; pistil 1, 3-locular; stigmas 3, fleshy, reflexed. Ripe frts. smooth, ellipsoid to obovoid, bright red or orange, with apical stigmatic residue. Ca. 10--50 spp., S Mex. to Guianas, Trin., Tobago, E Braz., Bol., Less. Ant. (St. Vincent).

This genus belongs to the group of "cocoid" palms (see under Cocos for additional information). Desmoncus is highly distinctive and usually easily recognized by the combination of spininess and scandent, ± lianescent growth habit, with the plants climbing by means of stiff, retrorse hooks (acanthophylls) borne on an elongate extension (cirrus) of the lf.-rachis. These hooks readily snag one's hair, and may be a nuisance in situations where they hang close to the ground.

One Costa Rican Desmoncus sp., D. stans, is extremely anomalous in several features, most obviously its erect, understory habit and lack of acanthophylls. This sp., endemic to the Pen. Osa and vicinity, might easily be mistaken for a Bactris sp. (see discussion under D. stans for field distinctions). Technically, Desmoncus differs from Bactris in the distal (rather than basal) insertion of the peduncular bract and the basifixed anthers with the stamen filaments erect in bud (vs. usually dorsifixed anthers with the filaments apically inflexed to curved in bud).

Because of the formidable spininess, high-climbing habit, and infrequent flowering of most Desmoncus spp., fertile collections are infrequent (and flowering collections rarer still). Partly as a consequence of this, the genus remains very poorly understood taxonomically, and is badly in need of a modern revision. Henderson et al. (1995) addressed this problem by uncritically placing a long list of names, including D. costaricensis and D. schippii, in synonymy under D. orthacanthos Mart. The last-mentioned name is based on material from Atl. Brazil which, in my opinion, does not correspond to any taxon occurring in Mesoamerica. I have similarly excluded some other names that have occasionally been applied to CR material, e.g., Desmoncus chinantlensis Liebm. (type from Oaxaca) and D. isthmius L. H. Bailey (type from E Darién, Panama).

The following treatment, though perhaps more realistic for CR purposes than that of Henderson et al. mentioned above, is nonetheless preliminary, and should be regarded as highly tentative.

Burret, M. 1934. Die Palmengattung Desmoncus Mart. Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 36: 197--221.

1 Plants suberect, < 3 m tall, lacking acanthophylls, but with a naked, ± filamentous extension of the lf.-rachis to ca. 14 cm; lflts. regularly cirrhous apically; infls. spicate; Pac. slope, Pen. Osa and vicinity... D. stans

1' Plants ± scandent, > 3 m tall, climbing by means of retrorse hooks (acanthophylls) borne on a ± elongate, whiplike extension of the lf.-rachis; lflts. acute to acuminate (rarely cirrhous) apically; infls. racemosely branched; both slopes, widespread

2 Petiole beyond sheath > 8 cm; lflts. broadly elliptical, the larger ones > 5 cm wide; Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca... D. costaricensis

2' Petiole beyond sheath < 8 cm; lflts. narrowly elliptical to lanceolate, the larger ones < 5 cm wide; both slopes

3 Lflts. > 15 per side; infl. rachis > 12 cm; rachillae ca. 19--38+, ca. 4.5--16+ cm, becoming strongly undulate; ripe frts. weakly rostrate; mainly Atl. slope...D. schippii

3' Lflts. < 15 per side; infl. rachis < 12 cm; rachillae ca. 14--16, 1.5--6 cm, weakly undulate; ripe frts. prominently rostrate; Pac. slope... D. sp. A

Desmoncus costaricensis (Kuntze) Burret, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 36: 202. 1934. [Atitara costaricensis Kuntze, Revis. gen. pl. 2: 726. 1891].--Stems briefly scandent in understory, ca. 2.5--6 m tall and 2.5 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 10--16 cm, finely spinulose, the spinules to ca. 0.1 cm. Lf.-rachis ca. 78--105 cm long, finely spinulose (as petiole) and with remote, elongate spines to at least 4.5 cm, prolonged distally in extension ca. 19--51 cm, with 3--8 acanthophylls per side; lflts. ca. 8--11 per side, ca. 14.5--33 X 3.8--11 cm, acute to subacuminate apically. Peduncle to at least 28.2 cm, with bract ca. 15.5--25+ cm long, uniformly short-spinose. Infl. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 4.5--5.5 cm; rachillae ca. 15--17, ca. 3--7 cm. Male fls. unknown. Female fls. ca. 2--2.5 mm. Ripe frts. 1.0--1.3 X 0.7--1.0 cm, obovoid, obscurely rostrate, becoming orange-red. Wet forests, ca. 0--200+ m; Atl. slope Cord. Talamanca, S from vic. Siquirres. Fl. 9, 11. ENDEMIC. [Grayum et al. 8746, INB, MO.]

Desmoncus costaricensis differs from our other scandent Desmoncus spp. in its long petioles, lacking obvious spines, and comparatively broad lflts. It resembles the Pac. slope D. sp. A in having green-drying foliage and in infl. dimensions, but the latter sp. differs in having shorter lflts. and prominently rostrate frts. (in addition to its much shorter, spinier petioles).

The type of Atitara costaricensis is sterile and very fragmentary, but the lflt. dimensions and other details best fit this taxon. The type locality is inscrutable ("mountains south of San José"), but the route of the collector (Kuntze) passed by Siquirres, near which this species is known to occur. No Desmoncus species are known from the "mountains south of San José," within striking distance of Kuntze's rather hurried traverse.

Desmoncus schippii Burret, Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 36: 202. 1934. [D. ferox Bartlett; D. leiorhachis Burret; D. leptochaete Burret?; D. lundellii Bartlett; D. quasillarius Bartlett; D. uaxactunensis Bartlett].--Stems long-scandent, ascending to canopy, ca. 5--[???] m tall and 2--3 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath ca.1.5--5 cm, unarmed or spinose, the spines to 0.5--2.2 cm. Lf.-rachis ca. 54--115+ cm long, virtually unarmed or spinose (as petiole), prolonged distally in extension ca. 43--76+ cm, with 6--10 acanthophylls per side; lflts. ca. 16--19+ per side, ca. 15--29 X 1.3--4.2+ cm, acuminate apically. Peduncle ca. 15++ cm, with bract ca. 26--43+ cm long, uniformly black-spinose. Infl. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 13--24 cm; rachillae ca. 19--38+, ca. 4.5--16+ cm. Male fls. ca. 4--7 mm (Nic.). Female fls. ca. 3--3.5 mm. Ripe frts. 0.9--1.3 X 0.8--1.3 cm, oblate to subglobose, weakly rostrate, becoming yellow to red. Wet forests, ca. 0--600 m; N Atl. slope (Llanura de los Guatusos to Llanura de Tortuguero), Pac. slope Pen. Nicoya (?). Fl. 1, 11. Bel. to CR. [Grayum et al. 11117, INB, MO.]

Desmoncus schippii is the most common and frequently collected CR Desmoncus spp. It is recognized by its high-climbing, canopy habit, very short petioles, numerous, narrowly elliptical or lanceolate lflts. drying reddish brown, and comparatively large infls. with the rachillae becoming strongly undulate. This sp. occurs at EB La Selva, and is common and conspicuous on forest edges along the canals at PN Tortuguero. A specimen from near Bejuco, Pen. Nicoya (A. Rodríguez 364, CR, INB) appears to represent D. schippii.

The name Desmoncus schippii, based on a Belizean type that I have not seen, is applied tentatively to Costa Rican material. No earlier published name would seem to pertain to our plants. The name Desmoncus leptochaete, based on a lost collection from near Ciudad Neily in the Pac. lowlands of CR, is problematical. The original description certainly does not agree with D. stans or D. sp. A, species that might be expected at the type locality, but concords well with D. schippii. However, I have seen no collections of D. schippii from the Pac. slope. Desmoncus schippii may eventually turn up on the Pac. slope, or else the name D. leptochaete may be found to correspond to a fifth CR Desmoncus sp., not treated here.

Desmoncus stans Grayum & de Nevers, Principes 32: 106, figs. 5--8. 1988.--Stems erect or leaning on surrounding vegetation, ca. 1--2.5 m tall and 0.5--1.2 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath 5--14.5 cm, ± sparsely spiny, the spines to ca. 4.5 cm. Lf.-rachis 15--41 cm long, sparingly spiny (as petiole), prolonged distally in naked, filamentous extension ca. 0.4--14 cm; lflts. 3--7 per side, ca. 8--22 X 2.5--6.4 cm, cirrhous apically. Peduncle to at least 38 cm, with bract 12--18.5 cm long, unarmed. Infl. spicate; rachilla 3.5--12 cm. Male fls. ca. 6--9 mm. Female fls. ca. 3 mm long. Ripe frts. 1.1--2.1 X 1.1--1.6 cm, subglobose to obovoid, brieflly rostrate, bright red. Wet forests, ca. 100--700 m; Pac. slope, Pen. Osa and head of Golfo Dulce. Fl. 5, 7--8. ENDEMIC. [Aguilar 286, CR, INB, MO.]

The self-supporting, non-scandent habit, filamentous cirri (lacking acanthophylls), cirrhous lflt. apices, and spicate infls. of Desmoncus stans are all unique among Mesoamerican Desmoncus spp., and highly unusual in the genus overall. Because of its erect habit and lack of acanthophylls, D. stans might easily be mistaken for a Bactris sp.; however no Bactris spp. have cirrhous lflt. apices, and no Costa Rican spp. have spicate infls. (though some Bactris spp., e.g., B. glandulosa, may occasionally exhibit filamentous cirri).

Desmoncus sp. A.--Stems scandent, ca. [???] m tall and 1.0 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 3.1--5 cm, spinose, the spinules to at least 1.5 cm. Lf.-rachis ca. 59 cm long, remotely spiny, the spines to ca. 2 cm, prolonged distally in extension ca. 57 cm, with ca. 9 acanthophylls per side; lflts. ca. 10 per side, ca. 13--20 X 1.5--4.4 cm, acuminate to (rarely) cirrhous apically. Peduncle to at least 26 cm, with bract unknown. Infl. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 7.2--9 cm; rachillae ca. 14--16, ca. 1.5--6 cm. Male fls. unknown. Female fls. unknown. Ripe frts. 1.1--1.6 X 0.8--1.4 cm, obovoid to subglobose, prominently rostrate, orange. Wet forests, ca. 100--200 m; Pac. slope, Pen. Osa. Fr. 8--9. ENDEMIC. [Aguilar 290, INB, MO.]

This, the only scandent Desmoncus sp. definitely known from the S Pac. slope of CR, is further distinctive in its prominently rostrate frts. It combines the green-drying foliage and smallish infls. of D. costaricensis with the short petioles and narrow (in absolute dimensions) lflts. of D. schippii. This sp. is at present very poorly known, and additional material is needed.

The name Desmoncus leptochaete Burret applies to a scandent sp. of the Pac. slope of CR, but the protologue describes something very different from D. sp. A (see under D. schippii).

Elaeis

Stems procumbent to erect, very stout and sometimes (E. guineensis) arborescent, solitary, unarmed. Petioles beyond sheath elongate, marginally armed basally with regularly spaced fiber-spines, distally (= basal portion of lf.-rachis) with short, triangular spines, the sheath disintegrating into a fibrous reticulum. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, the rachis unarmed (except as described above), the lflts. numerous, subequal, linear, regularly spaced and arranged in a single plane or (E. guineensis) clustered and in various planes. Plants monoecious, the infls. unisexual (or occasionally bisexual, especially in young plants), interfoliar. Prophyll short, flattened, becoming fibrous, included in petiole sheath. Peduncles short, ± erect, with several bracts, the largest (basal) thin, fibrous, inserted well above prophyll. Infls. condensed, racemosely branched, the rachillae with ± spinelike tips, more slender in male infls. Fls. unisexual, spirally arranged, bracteate, solitary, the male fls. borne in pits and more densely packed. Male fls. with 3 distinct sepals and 3 distinct petals; stamens 6, the filaments connate in a tube. Female fls. much larger, with 3 distinct sepals and 3 distinct petals; staminodia connate in a low, 6-pointed ring; pistil 1, 3-locular; stigmas 3, fleshy, reflexed. Ripe frts. densely packed, smooth, ± ovoid to ellipsoid, orange to red burnished with maroon to blackish., with apical stigmatic residue. 2 spp., SE Hond. to Guianas, Braz., Peru, trop. Afr.

Elaeis, a member of the "cocoid" palm group (see under Cocos), is the only palm genus occurring naturally in CR that has pinnately compound lf.-blades with a single row of stout spines along each petiole margin. Other genera (e.g., Bactris) may have pinnately compound blades with spiny petioles, but then the spines are more slender and distributed around the petiole. The massive, short-peduncled, very dense, unisexual infls. with ± spine-tipped rachillae are also distinctive.

The frts. as well as the seeds are very rich in oil, and both spp. have been exploited, to one extent or another, for this resource.

Schultes, R. E. 1990. Taxonomic, nomenclatural and ethnobotanic notes on Elaeis. Elaeis 2: 172--187.

1 Trunk erect; lflts. ca. 100--160 per side, clustered and in various planes; male rachillae ca. 8--14 cm, with sharp acumen > 0.5 cm; female rachillae with lower margin of flower-pits prolonged into a thornlike bract ca. 0.8--1.7 cm long; cult. (perhaps rarely escaped)... E. guineensis

1' Trunk mostly decumbent; lflts. ca. 60--90 per side, regularly arranged in a single plane; male rachillae ca. (9--) 13--25 cm, without acumen, or acumen < 0.5 cm; female rachillae with lower margin of flower-pits ± bifid, not prolonged; native sp....E. oleifera

Elaeis guineensis Jacq., Select. stirp. amer. hist. 280, t. 172. 1763. PALMA AFRICANA, OIL PALM--Stem erect, to 20+ m tall, ca. 22--75 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 1.5--2 m. Lf.-blades ca. 3--5 m long, the lflts. ca. 100--160 per side, clustered and in various planes, the largest (medial) ca 100--120 X 3--4 cm. Peduncles ca. 30--45 cm. Infl. rachis ca. 20--40 cm; rachillae ca. 100--200, those of male infls. ca. 8--14 cm with terminal spine ca. 0.5--1.5 cm, those of female infls. ca. 10--12 cm with sharp terminal acumen to ca. 2.8 cm. Male fls. ca. 4 mm long, [cream-colored], with intense anise fragrance; anthers ca. 2 mm long. Female fls. ca. 20 mm long, [white]. Ripe frts. ca. 2--5 X 3 cm, , broadly ellipsoidal or ovoid to subglobose (often faceted by mutual pressure), orange in proximal half, brown to blackish in distal half. Wet forests, 0--200+ m; both slopes, cult. only, usually in plantations. Fr. [???]. Afr. (Senegal to Angola to Zanzibar and Madag.), but introd. throughout tropics. [A. C. Sanders et al. 17563, CR.]

Elaeis guineensis, introduced from Africa, differs from the indigenous E. oleifera in potentially becoming a tall tree (to 20 m or more). Nonetheless, plants of E. guineensis may begin to flower when virtually stemless, in which case the supplementary distinctions given in the sp.-key must be deployed.

This is the oil palm of commerce, a very important crop in the humid lowlands of CR, where it is typically grown in vast, monotonous plantations. These are most evident on the Pac. slope, especially between Parrita and Quepos and in the Golfo Dulce region, but may also be seen on the Atl. slope, e.g., in the Sixaola region. The stout trunks are studded with persistent petiole bases, which offer abundant perches for ferns and other epiphytes. Individual plants of E. guineensis may occasionally be cultivated for ornament, but this species rarely, if ever, naturalizes.

Elaeis oleifera (Kunth) Cortés, Flora de Colombia 1: 203. 1897. [Alfonsia oleifera Kunth, in Humb., Bonpl. & Kunth, Nov. gen. sp. Quarto ed. 1: 307, Folio ed. 1: 246. 1816; Corozo oleifera (Kunth) L. H. Bailey]. COROZO, COQUITO, PALMICHE (Pen. Nicoya), HONE (Talamanca)--Stem decumbent basally with many adventitious roots, the erect portion to 3+ m tall, to ca. 30--65 cm diam. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 1--3 m. Lf.-blades ca. 2--4 m long, the lflts. ca. 60--90 per side, regularly arranged in a single plane, the largest (medial) ca 80--110 X 3--6.5 cm. Peduncles ca. 20--50 cm. Infl. rachis ca. 10--20 cm; rachillae ca. 40--55 [male, anyway], those of male infls. ca. (9-) 13--25 cm with terminal spine 0--0.3 cm, those of female infls. ca. 4--9 cm with blunt terminal acumen ca. 0.7--2 cm. Male fls. ca. 2.5--3 mm long, [cream-colored]; anthers ca. 1 mm long. Female fls. ca. 15 mm long, white. Ripe frts. ca. 2--3.5 X 1.4--2 cm, , ± broadly ellipsoidal to ovoid-oblong, yellow to orange or orange-red. Wet forests (wet pastures and swamp forest), 0--100 m; rare on Atl. slope, much more common on Pac. slope (Pen. Nicoya, Jacó, Golfo Dulce region, Pen. Osa, RB Isla del Caño, etc.). Fr. 7--8. E Hond. (Gracias a Dios) to N Col. [A. C. Sanders et al. 17560, CR.]

Elaeis oleifera is a smaller, less coarse version of the familiar African oil palm, E. guineensis, and grows in the same life-zones that are suitable for cultivation of that species. Though it frequently grows in open sites, even near roadsides, E. oleifera is rarely collected (probably because the infls. and infrs. are borne inconspicuously among the leaves). Its distribution within Costa Rica is thus inadequately documented, though it is generally described as widespread on both slopes.

Elaeis oleifera has been sparingly exploited in Costa Rica, on a local basis, for the oil that is expressed from its frts. and used in cooking. Frts. were seen to be "eaten by Capuchin monkeys" at RNVS Curú, Pen. Nicoya (A. C. Sanders et al. 17560).

Amazonian material that has been referred to Elaeis oleifera is rather different, and probably not conspecific. The type is from N Col. (Cartagena).

Euterpe

Euterpe is the type genus in a subtribe of New World palms characterized by pinnately compound lvs. with ± numerous, narrowly lanceolate lflts., usually racemosely branched infls., and pseudomonomerous pistils (i.e., unilocular ovaries). The last feature is unique, among native CR palms, to this group, which also includes Hyospathe, Neonicholsonia (with spicate infls.), Oenocarpus, and Prestoea. 7 spp., Guat. and Bel. to Guianas, Trin., Tobago, N Arg., Parag., Bol., Less. Ant.

Henderson, A. & G. Galeano. 1996. Euterpe, Prestoea, and Neonicholsonia (Palmae: Euterpeinae). Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 72: 1--90.

Euterpe precatoria Mart., in A. D. Orb., Voy. Amér. mér. 7(3) Palmiers 10, t. 8, fig. 2, t. 18A. 1842. [E. macrospadix Oerst.; E. microspadix sensu Standl. (1937), non Burret; E. panamensis Burret; Rooseveltia frankliniana O. F. Cook]. PALMITO, PALMITO MANTEQUILLA--Stems erect, solitary, ca. 6--20+ m tall and ca. 10--25 cm diam., unarmed. Petioles beyond sheath ca. 9--30 cm, unarmed, the sheath closed and forming a prominent green crownshaft ca. 1--2 m long. Lf.-blades pinnately compound, ca. 2.5--4 m long, the rachis unarmed, the lflts. ca. 43--78 per side, subequal, ca. 62--80+ X 2--4 cm (medial ones), narrowly lanceolate, regularly spaced and arranged in a single plane. Plants monoecious, the infls. bisexual, infrafoliar. Prophyll to at least 1.3 m long, flattened, chartaceous. Peduncle ca. 7--15 cm, with [usually] 1 terete, chartaceous, beaked bract to at least 1.1 m long. Infls. racemosely branched; rachis ca. 32--55 cm; rachillae to ca. 100+, ca. 25--72 cm, densely white- to brownish stellate-tomentose. Fls. unisexual, pinkish (at least in bud), spirally arranged in bracteate triads (basally on rachillae) and solitary or paired male fls. (distally), the female fls. sunken in pits. Male fls. ca. 4--5 mm long, with 3 distinct sepals and 3 distinct petals; stamens 6, the filaments short. Female fls. ca. 3.5--5 mm long, with 3 distinct sepals and 3 distinct petals; staminodia absent; pistil 1, 1-locular; stigmas 3, short, recurved. Ripe frts. ca. 0.7--1.1 X 0.7--1.1 cm, ± oblate to subglobose, smooth, purple-black, with lateral to subapical stigmatic residue. Wet forests, 0--1150 m; Atl. slope Cord. Central (to RNFS Barra del Colorado), Pac. slope Golfo Dulce region and Fila Costeña, PN Isla del Coco. Fl. 3, 9, 11--12. Bel. and Guat. to Guianas, Trin., Braz., Bol. [Grayum & Herrera 7813, CR, MO.]

Euterpe precatoria comprises tall, graceful palms of well-drained sites in primary forest. It is easily recognized by its solitary stems, smooth, green crownshaft, evenly pinnate lf.-blades with narrow lflts., racemosely branched infls. with numerous, slender rachillae, and smallish, subglobose frts. In the herbarium, the dense, whitish, stellate pubescence of the infl. rachillae is the best mark. Perhaps the most similar CR species are Oenocarpus mapora (Golfo Dulce region) and Prestoea acuminata (above ca. 1400 m elevation), both of which have cespitose stems and purplish crownshafts.

This sp. is very highly esteemed in CR for its tasty palmito, or palm heart. For this reason, plants tend to be rare in the vicinity of human habitation.

All Cent. Amer. material of Euterpe precatoria corresponds to var. longevaginata (Mart.) Andrew Hend. (Palms Amaz. 111. 1995) [E. longevaginata Mart., in A. D. Orb., Voy. Amér. mér. 7(3) Palmiers 11, t. 15, fig. 1. 1842], which ranges to Venez. and Amaz. Bol.

Euterpe oleracea Mart. (E Pan. to NE Braz.), which differs from E. precatoria in having cespitose stems, is cultivated rarely in Costa Rica. This sp. is also valued for its edible palmito and frts.

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