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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 3/22/2013)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 3/22/2013)
Species Spondias purpurea L.
PlaceOfPublication Sp. PI. ed. 2, 613, 1762.-Fig. 5(E).
Synonym Spondias cytherea Sonn., Voy. Ind. Or. Chin., t. 123, 1782. Warmingia pauciflora Engler in Martius, Fl. Bras. 12(2): 281, t. 57, 1874. Spondias purpurea var. venulosa Engler in Martius, loc. cit. 373, 1876. Spondias macrocarpa Engler in Martius, loc. cit. 375, t. 78. Spondias purpurea var. munita Johnston, Sargentia 8: 182, 1949.
Description Shrub or small tree to 10(-15) m high with smooth gray bark, the branches stout. Leaves with (3-)5-12 pairs of leaflets, the rachis 5-25 cm long (often sulcate or bisulcate above and with pilose trichomes bordering the grooves), the leaflets alternate or opposite, with petiolules 0.5-3 mm long and frequently pilose; lamina of leaflets obliquely elliptic to obovate or less often ovate, apically acute or sub- acuminate to rounded or emarginate and often cuspidate, basally typically acute but varying from subattenuate to obtuse, assymetric at the base, entire or serrate (the teeth sometimes with a cilium at the tip), 1.5-6 cm long, 0.7-3 cm broad, membranous, pilose along the midvein (and sometimes on the secondaries) above and/or below or else glabrous, with a rather distinct submarginal collecting vein. Inftorescences racemose-paniculate or subeapitate, laterally disposed on older de- nuded branches, red or reddish-purple, 0.5-8 cm long, pilosulous or glabrate. Flowers a, red, the distally articulated pedicels 0.5-4 mm long; calyx-segments 5, rotund-ovate, ca 1 mm long; petals 5, lanceolate to oblong- or ovate-lanceolate apically strongly uncinate (hooked inward), 2.5-3.5 mm long, erect or strongly ascending; stamens 10, subequal or unequal, slightly exceeded by the petals, the filaments flattened, tapering toward the apex; disc strongly crenate to subentire; styles (3-)4, 1 mm long or slightly less, ovate or ampulliform, glabrous, conspicu- ously constricted at the beginning of the capitate stigmatic portion. Drupes red or purple, 1.5-3.5 cm long, 1-2.5 cm broad, ovoid or oblong.
Habit Shrub or small tree
Distribution Southern Mexico, Central America and the West Indies to Brazil and Peru; cultivated in southern Florida.
Specimen BOCAS DEL TORO: region of Almirante, Cooper 355 (F, US). CANAL ZONE: Chiva-Chiva Trail, Red Tank to Pueblo Nuevo, Piper 5772 (US); hospital grounds at Ancon, Pittier 2729 (US); Sosa Hill, Balboa, Standley 26485 (US); along the old Las Cruces Trail, betw Fort Clayton & Corozal, Standley 29122 (US); vic of Miraflores Locks, Madden Dam, Trans-Isthmian Hwy, Stern et al. 350 (MO, US); nr mouth of Cocoli River, White 98 (MO). CHIRIQUI: Progreso, Cooper & Slater 202 (US); Boquete Distr, Davidson 763 (F); Rio San Cristobal, 2 mi W of David, Tyson 914 (MO). COCLE: Penonome, Williams 380 (US). DARIEN: vic of El Real, Rio Tuira, Stern et al. 795 (MO, US). PANAMA: along Chiva-Chiva Trail to Search Light Station beyond Chiva-Chiva, Allen 954 (MO); San Jose I, Johnston 573 (holotype of var. munita GH; isotype US), Johnston 1410 (MO); Bellavista, Macbride 2760 (F., US), Standbey 25388 (US); Savana de Alhajuela, Chargres Valley, Pittier 3486 (US); banks of Mamoni River, below Chepo, Pittier 4692 (US); Tumba Muerto Rd., nr Panama, Standley 29779 (US); betw Matias Hernandez & Juan Diaz, Stand- ley 31940 (US); Taboga I, Woodson et al. 1511 (MO). PROVINCE UNKNOWN: "Western Panama," Stork 27 (US).
Note Spondias purpurea var. munita is not recognized as a distinct taxon in this treatment. In examining specimens assigned to this proposed segregate (including type specimens), no character was found which provides absolute separation from other specimens of S. purpurea. A feature considered by Johnston (loc. cit. 183) to be among those distinguishing var. munita is the rather striking serration of the leaflets. However, the leaflets of many other specimens of S. purpurea show a greater or lesser amount of serration. The woody spines, reportedly characteristic of older branches of specimens of var. munita', were not present on the material available for study. Characters of the inflorescence, flower and fruit mentioned by Johnston do not serve to distinguish var. munita. The plum-like fruits of the "red mombin" or "hog plum" are extensively eaten in tropical America, reportedly having a sweet-acid flavor.
Common red mombin hog plum
 
 
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