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Aiphanes horrida


Common name

ruffle palm, coyure palm

Description

Stems: Solitary, upright, grayish stems to 10 m tall and up to 15 cm in diameter, ringed with flattened black spines (up to 2 cm long) and leaf leaf:
in palms -- the leaf blade (which is usually divided into leaflets or leaf segments), the petiole (or leaf stalk) and the sheath (which forms the attachment of the leaf to the stem)
scars. Leaves: Pinnate, with a short, spiny petiole and drooping, spiny rachis. Leaflets, clustered in groups of 4-6, grow in several planes, and the praemorse praemorse:
with a jagged edge or like a fish tail
tips have three major teeth. The wedge-shaped leaflets are dramatically wider at the leaf leaf:
in palms -- the leaf blade (which is usually divided into leaflets or leaf segments), the petiole (or leaf stalk) and the sheath (which forms the attachment of the leaf to the stem)
apex. The blades may be glabrous to more or less covered with small spines. Flowers and fruits: Inflorescences (about 60-90 cm long) are borne among the leaves and are once branched. Separate staminate staminate:
a flower bearing stamens but no pistils; a “male” flower
and pistillate pistillate:
a flower bearing a pistil but no stamens; a “female” flower
(male and female) flowers are held on the same inflorescence. Fruits are spherical, 1.6-2.3 cm, and bright red or orange-red when ripe.

Diagnostic features

Field: Erect, solitary palms with dark spines and leaf leaf:
in palms -- the leaf blade (which is usually divided into leaflets or leaf segments), the petiole (or leaf stalk) and the sheath (which forms the attachment of the leaf to the stem)
scar rings on the pale stem, leaves with praemorse praemorse:
with a jagged edge or like a fish tail
leaflets, and spines on almost every part of the palm.

Lab: Spines on new leaves may be covered with grayish white tomentum.

May be confused with

Aiphanes minima is similarly spiny, but its leaflets are more or less lanceolate,lanceolate:
term to describe leaves and leaflets that are longer than wide and widest below the mid-point; lance-shaped
, widest at the midpoint and gradually tapering toward the base and praemorse praemorse:
with a jagged edge or like a fish tail
tip while Aiphanes horrida has wedge-shaped praemorse praemorse:
with a jagged edge or like a fish tail
leaflets with a ruffled appearance.

Distribution

Native to seasonally dry forests and sometimes wet forests of tropical South America and in Trinidad

Additional comments

The fruits of this species are edible and are sold in some South American markets.

Scientific name

Aiphanes horrida (Jacq.) Burret.

Family

Arecaceae/Palmae

Synonyms

Aiphanes aculeata Willd.

Aiphanes caryotifolia (Kunth) H.Wendl.

Aiphanes elegans (Linden & H.Wendl.) H.Wendl.

Aiphanes ernestii (Burret) Burret

Aiphanes killipii (Burret) Burret

Aiphanes orinocensis Burret

Aiphanes premorsa (Poepp. ex Mart.) Burret

Aiphanes truncata (Brongn. ex Mart.) H.Wendl.

Bactris premorsa Poepp. ex Mart.

Caryota horrida Jacq.

Euterpe aculeata (Jacq.) Spreng.

Martinezia aculeata (Jacq.) Klotzsch

Martinezia caryotifolia Kunth

Martinezia killipii Burret