Pigeon pea, Guandú, Frijol de palo
Shrub, woody at base, to 3 m tall; stems minutely sericeous, 3-ridged from the nodes. Leaves trifoliolate; stipules lanceolate, 2.5-3 mm long; petioles 1-4 cm long; rachis 5-15 mm long; leaflets narrowly elliptic, acute or slightly acuminate at apex, cuneate at base, softly puberulent and grayish-green above, glandular-dotted, tomentose, and pale below, the terminal leaflet 5-10 cm long, 2-3.5 cm wide, the veins at base 3. Racemes terminal or upper-axillary, 2-6 cm long, the flowers often paired at the nodes; pedicels 5-10 mm long; calyx bilabiate, to 8 mm long, lobed half its length, the lobes acute to acuminate, the upper 2 ± united along their common side; petals to 2 cm long, yellow, the standard often red to maroon outside. Legumes oblong, 5-10 cm long, 1-1.5 cm wide, puberulent, strongly beaked, yellowish-green with brown-striped mottling, with oblique constrictions between the seeds on the side of the legume, the calyx persisting at base; seeds 2-5, flattened, ca 7 mm diam, gray, the hilum prominent. Croat 7238.
Cultivated in the Laboratory Clearing. Flowers and fruits primarily from January to March, but sometimes flowering much earlier, even in the late rainy season. The fruits develop in about 1 month.
Probably native to the East Indies; introduced sporadically in the New World tropics. In Panama, known from tropical moist forest in the Canal Zone, Bocas del Toro, Coclé, Panama, and Darien.