Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Dalbergia retusa

Hemsl., Diag. Pl. Mex. 8.1878, non Baillon 1884

Cocobola, Rosewood

Tree, to 20 m tall, ca 30 cm dbh; outer bark coarse, be­coming fissured and loosened in age; wood dark, hard, heavy. Leaves alternate, pinnate; stipules caducous, ovate-­elliptic, to 2 cm long, persistent on juvenile plants; peti­oles to 6 cm long, puberulent; rachis 10-20 cm long; leaflets 7-15, alternate on rachis, oblong to         ovate-oblong, obtuse and often slightly emarginate at apex, obtuse to rounded at base, 6-10 cm long, 2.5-3.5 cm wide, appressed-pubescent below when young, becoming glabrate in age. Panicles axillary or terminal, appearing just before or at same time as new leaves; branches, pedi­cels, and calyces sparsely to densely pubescent, the tri­chomes short, brown, appressed; pedicels 3-4 mm long; calyx 5-7 mm long, lobed to        one-third its length, weakly bilabiate, the teeth acute; petals white, 1-1.4 (2) cm long; standard emarginate, clawed; keel petals fused at apex; stamens fused into a single tube with an open slit apically, markedly curved at apex, exceeded by the style. Legumes ± oblong, flat, 6-8 cm long, ca 2 cm wide, borne on stipes ca 1 cm long, glaucous, glabrous, mostly 1-seeded (if 2-seeded, the fruit to 13 cm long), the winged area of equal thickness throughout; seeds discoid, to ca 1 cm diam, medial on fruit body. Croat 5320.

A single tree, which undoubtedly was planted, grows near the laboratory. Herbarium collections from central Panama have shown flowers throughout much of the year, but the tree on BCI loses its leaves in the dry season and then flowers as the new leaves are emerging from Feb­ruary to July, usually in March and April. The species may flower only every other year (Frankie, Baker, & Opler, 1974). The fruits develop to full size within 2 months, but persist until the following dry season.

Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. In Pan­ama, known from tropical moist forest in the Canal Lone, Panama, and Darién and from premontane moist forest in Colón and Panama.

See Fig. 282.

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Dalbergia retusa
  • Dalbergia retusa
  • Dalbergia retusa Bark
  • Dalbergia retusa Flower
  • Dalbergia retusa Fruit
  • Dalbergia retusa Fruit Leaf
  • Dalbergia retusa Fruit Leaf
  • Dalbergia retusa Fruit Leaf
  • Dalbergia retusa