Aiphanes horrida

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Aiphanes (ah-ee-FAHN-ehz)
horrida (HOHR-ree-dah)
Aiphanes aculeata aka caryotifolia Sul.JPG
Scientific Classification
Genus: Aiphanes (ah-ee-FAHN-ehz)
horrida (HOHR-ree-dah)
Aiphanes caryotifolia, Aiphanes aculeata.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Height: 3-10m
Trunk diameter: 6-10cm
Sun exposure: Partial Shade
Survivability index
Common names
Corozo, Ruffle Palm, Coyure Palm, Cocos rura, Mararay, Macagüita, Marará, Macahuite, Corozo del Orinoco, Corozo anchame, Mararava, Cubarro, Chonta, Chascaraza, Charascal, Corozo chiquito, Corozo colorado, Pujamo, Gualte, Chonta ruro, Pupunha xicaxica, Coyure palm, Ruffle palm, Aculeata palm, and Spine palm.

Habitat and Distribution

Aiphanes horrida is a palm native to northern South America and Trinidad and Tobago.
Hawaiian Tropical Botanical Garden.
The range of the species is found in dry forests between sea level and 1700 m (5600') above sea level in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela, but is not native to Ecuador.


A solitary palm to 10 m. high (9–30 feet), cultivated trees may be as much as 15 m (49'). Thorny trunk, diameter: 6-15 cm. (2-6 inches), armed with long sharp spines on nearly all parts, even the leaf surfaces, with Paripinnate leaves, length: 1.5-2 m., consisting of 15-20 pairs of pinnae linear and polyclines. Leaflets are broad at the tips, ruffled, and spiny, on pale spiny petiole. Flowers monoecious, grouped in panicles axillary and interlayer compounds (length: 0.7 to 1.5 m). Fruit diameter: 20 mm, The round fruits are bright red with an orange endocarp, 1-2.3 cm diameter. It has a very attractive crown of light green, (From the French).


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Comments and Curiosities

The epicarp and mesocarp of the fruit rich in carotene and are eaten in Colombia, while the seeds are used to make candles. In parts of the Colombian Llanos endocarps are used to play games.

The species is cultivated as an ornamental throughout the tropics.

Many authors, including Henderson, and Borchenius and Bernal, use A. aculeata rather than A. horrida, giving Jacquin's description of Caryota horrida a publication date of 1809, three years after Willdenow's 1806 description. On the other hand, Govaerts, gives Jacquin's work a publication date of 1801, giving A. horrida priority over A. aculeata.

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

Special thanks to Geoff Stein, (Palmbob) for his hundreds of photos.

Special thanks to, Dr. John Dransfield, Dr. Bill Baker & team, for their volumes of information and photos.

Glossary of Palm Terms; Based on the glossary in Dransfield, J., N.W. Uhl, C.B. Asmussen-Lange, W.J. Baker, M.M. Harley & C.E. Lewis. 2008. Genera Palmarum - Evolution and Classification of the Palms. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. All images copyright of the artists and photographers (see images for credits).

Many Special Thanks to Ed Vaile for his long hours of tireless editing and numerous contributions.

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