Astrocaryum sciophilum

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Astrocaryum (ahs-tro-kahr-EE-uhm)
sciophilum (see-oh-FIlL-uhm)
Trail Smoke Mountains, Saul, Guyane, (French Guiana). Photo-Flore de Guyane
Scientific Classification
Genus: Astrocaryum (ahs-tro-kahr-EE-uhm)
sciophilum (see-oh-FIlL-uhm)
Astrocaryum plicatum
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Astrocaryum sciophilum is found in Northern Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, and Suriname.
Trail Smoke Mountains, Saul, Guyane, (French Guiana). Photo-Flore de Guyane


This is a palm of the undergrowth, medium and slow growing, at maturity the lower torso is naked, while the top is covered with long black spines. The petiole are arranged so that they collect debris of all kinds, especially leaves or other litter, from above, and that accumulate in a cone shape, at the base of these plants. Editing by edric.


Hardiness, USDA zones 10a, a frost free location.

Comments and Curiosities

The nut is edible, and is used to craft in general. The leaf is used for deriving vegetable salt, and as a purgative. It is also used to decorate. The sap is drunk to cure snake bites. Medicinal-anti-venom. The squirrels eat the fruit. The seeds are rich in oil, and are eaten sparingly. It is possible that this palm may have significant potential as an oilseed, because although fruit production per tree is not abundant, populations are fairly large.

External Links


All information translated from the French, and Spanish, edric.

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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