Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Mabea occidentalis

Benth., Hooker's J. Bot. Kew Gard. Misc. 6:364.1854

Monoecious shrub or small tree, usually 4-6 (10) m tall, glabrous all over except on inflorescences; sap whitish, not copious. Leaves alternate, simple; stipules paired, linear, ca 5 mm long, caducous; petioles to 8 mm long; blades oblong, long-acuminate at apex, obtuse to rounded at base, 6-13 cm long, 2.5-4.5 cm wide, the margins sub­entire to crenulate and often undulate. Inflorescences pendent from leaf axils, ± granular-puberulent on axes and pedicels, to 12 cm long; staminate flowers in groups of 3, the peduncles stout, short, bearing a conspicuous biglandular bract at base; pedicels slender, articulate above base, ca 1 cm long; flowers globular, maroon, 1.5-2 mm wide; calyx of 3-5 ovate lobes; petals and disk lack­ing; anthers many; pistillate flowers solitary at basal nodes, 3-7 per inflorescence; pedicels 1-1.5 cm long, sub­tended by a mostly eglandular bract; sepals 6, maroon, bifid at apex, subequal; petals and disk lacking; ovary 3-carpellate, each carpel with 1 ovule; styles 3, connate into a slender column more than 1 cm long, free and sim­ple near apex, densely whitish-pubescent. Capsules sub­globose, ca 1.5 cm diam, 3-valved, explosively dehiscent, the valves in turn splitting into 2 parts; seeds 1 per carpel, ca 8 mm long, suspended by a fleshy funicle at apex. Croat 7026, 7303.

Frequent in the forest, especially the young forest. Flowers sporadically throughout the year, mostly from October to April. Most fruits mature during the dry season. Individuals are often found in the dry season with new flowering inflorescences that produce fruits in the rainy season.

Mexico to Brazil. In Panama, known from tropical moist forest in the Canal Zone, Colón, Veraguas, Panama, and Darien, from tropical dry forest in Panama (Taboga Island), from premontane moist forest in Panama, from premontane wet forest in Colón. and from premontane rain forest in Panama (summit of Cerro Jefe).

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Mabea occidentalis capsule
  • Mabea occidentalis flower-bud
  • Mabea occidentalis flower
  • Mabea occidentalis flower
  • Mabea occidentalis Inflorescence
  • Mabea occidentalis Inflorescence
  • Mabea occidentalis Inflorescence
  • Mabea occidentalis Inflorescence
  • Mabea occidentalis flower plant
  • Mabea occidentalis fruit