Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Cecropia obtusifolia

Bertol., Fl. Guat. 39.1840

C. mexicana Hemsl.; C. panamensis Hemsl.

Guarumo, Trumpet tree

Dioecious tree, mostly 5-10 m tall; trunk moderately slender, the young branches stout,           ferruginous-hirtellous to glabrate. Petioles densely short-pubescent; stipules 7-11 cm long; mature leaves usually divided more than halfway to center, scabridulous and minutely arachnoid above, paler and minutely cinereous below; lobes usually 9-15, rounded to shortly acuminate at apex, somewhat to moderately narrowed at base, the lower free margin held ± flat to moderately erect, the leaves thus ± pleated, the area surrounding the petiole flat to 3-4 cm in all direc­tions from center; veins, petioles, and spathes often ± maroon. Staminate spathes (11) 12-20 cm long, ca 2 cm wide at anthesis, gradually acuminate, the spadices usu­ally in clusters of 3-9, (10) 12-18 cm long, 3-4 mm thick, subsessile or with puberulent stipes to 1 cm long, the common peduncle 8-12 cm long; pistillate spathes 16-20 cm long at anthesis, usually arachnoid on outside, villous inside, the spadices in clusters of 2-4,17-30 cm long, ca 5 mm diam at anthesis, 6-9 mm diam and fleshy in fruit, the common peduncle 8-20 (24) cm long, usually rough with short erect trichomes. Achenes ovate to broadly oblong, somewhat flattened, the edges acute, 3.3-3.7 mm long, to 2.7 mm broad, tan to white. Croat 11716, 11800.

Very common along the edge of the lake, particularly the northern and the eroded eastern shorelines; occasional in the forest, especially in tree-fall areas, some trees being found in the older forest. Flowers and fruits throughout the year.

Most easily confused with C. peltata, which has leaves conspicuously pleated to the center with shorter, broader lobes and shorter spadices.

Fruits are taken by spider monkeys from April to August (Hladik & Hladik,1969).

Southern Mexico to Panama, Ecuador, and probably Colombia. In Panama, a wide-ranging and ecologically variable species and a characteristic tree of tropical moist forest (Holdridge & Budowski, 1956); known from tropi­cal moist forest in the Canal Zone, Bocas del Toro, Ve­raguas, Panama, and Darien (no doubt elsewhere also), from premontane wet forest in Panama, from tropical wet forest in Colon and Darien, and from premontane rain forest in Panama (summit of Cerro Jefe).

See Fig. 196.

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Cecropia obtusifolia
  • Cecropia obtusifolia flower-bud
  • Cecropia obtusifolia flower
  • Cecropia obtusifolia flower
  • Cecropia obtusifolia fruit
  • Cecropia obtusifolia immature-fruit
  • Cecropia obtusifolia immature-fruit plant
  • Cecropia obtusifolia seed-dry
  • Cecropia obtusifolia seed-wet
  • Cecropia obtusifolia Immature Fruit plant