Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Vatairea erythrocarpa

Ducke, Arch. Jard. Bot. Rio de Janeiro 5:139,192, pl. 12, f. 25.1930

Tree, to ca 27 m tall, ca 30 cm dbh; outer bark with many shallow fissures; inner bark smooth,         light-colored, the sap with a faint, sweet aroma; young stems puberulent, soon almost glabrous, lenticellate. Leaves alternate, imparipinnate, 25-40 cm long; stipules narrowly deltoid, ca 1.5 mm long; petioles 5-11 cm long; petioles, rachises, and petiolules puberulent; petiolules 4-5 mm long; leaflets     11-15, alternate to opposite, narrowly ovate to oblong­-elliptic, bluntly acuminate at apex and downturned, rounded to truncate at base, (3)5.5-11 cm long, (2.5)3-5.5 cm wide, glabrous or weakly            appressed-pubescent on midrib of lower surface, drying subcoriaceous, the margins somewhat thickened and turned down; major veins in 6-10 pairs, anastomosing and somewhat loop-connected 5-10 mm from the margin, the reticulate veins prominulous on dried specimens. Inflorescences terminal; flowers not seen. Fruits samaroid, ca 8.5 cm long, 1-seeded, yellowish-green, glabrous except sparsely        appressed-pubescent on ventral margin of seminiferous area, the seminiferous area ca 3 cm long, oval, bearing a conspicuous, almost medial ridge, this ridge continuous with the dorsal margin of the wing; wing obovate, mucronate at apex, thin, ca 5.5 cm long, the dorsal margin thickened. Croat 16624, Folsom 3509, Foster s.n.

Apparently rare; known only from the beginning of Snyder-Molino Trail and at the junction of Armour and Conrad trails. R. Foster collected fruits in the late dry season.

The leaves and twigs of this species are indistinguish­able from those of Pterocarpus officinalis, making sterile determination impossible.

Sterile collections by Folsom and Croat are presumably leaves of this species, which represents a new genus for the island's flora. The determination is doubtful, because the species has been known only from Brazil. Because determination is in doubt, it is not considered in the section of the introduction on geographical affinities.

Photos from STRI Digital Archive

  • Vatairea erythrocarpa Bark
  • Vatairea erythrocarpa Fruit
  • Vatairea erythrocarpa Fruit Leaf
  • Vatairea erythrocarpa Trunk
  • Vatairea erythrocarpa Trunk