Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Machaerium seemannii

Benth. ex Seem., Bot. Voy. Herald 110. 1853

Liana or less often a climbing shrub, to 4 m or more long; mature branchlets glabrous, lacking spinescent stipules; younger plants with some branches leafless and with well-­developed spinescent stipules. Leaves compound; rachis 5-9 (18) cm long; rachis, petiolule, and underside of blade sparsely ferruginous-pilose; petiolules 1-3 mm long; leaflets 6-13, oblong-lanceolate, ovate or narrowly elliptic, gradually acuminate and often falcate at apex, obtuse to rounded at base (rarely acute), 1.5-7.5 cm long, 0.7-2.7 cm wide, thinly coriaceous. Panicles 1-5 cm long, con­gested in the upper axils; branches densely ferruginous­-tomentose; bracteoles reniform, densely appressed-­pubescent; flowers purple, sessile; calyx 3-4 mm long, densely appressed-pubescent, the lobes inconspicuous; standard to 8 mm long; keel and wings only slightly shorter, the outer parts of all petals golden-brown­-sericeous. Samaras borne on narrow stipes (to 7 mm long), 6-9.5 cm long, 1.8-2.5 cm wide, very densely golden-puberulent all over, the carinal margin conspic­uously thickened to 1.5 mm thick, straight to curved. Croat 6049, 7983.

Frequent along the shore and in the forest to the top of the canopy; juvenile plants have been seen along trails. Flowering mostly during September and October but sometimes much later and in the early dry season. The fruits mature by January or February and are dispersed in the dry season (to April).

Guatemala to Colombia. In Panama, known principally from tropical moist forest in the Canal Zone (principally on the Pacific slope) and in Colon, Chiriqui (Puerto Armuelles), Panama, and Darién; known also from pre­montane wet forest in Chiriqui (Boquete) and Coclé and from tropical wet forest in Colon (Salúd).

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Machaerium seemannii fruit
  • Machaerium seemannii immature-fruit plant
  • Machaerium seemannii leaf
  • Machaerium seemannii
  • Machaerium seemannii
  • Machaerium seemannii Flower
  • Machaerium seemannii Flower
  • Machaerium seemannii Flower
  • Machaerium seemannii, leaves
  • Machaerium seemannii Flower