Bactris glandulosa var. baileyana

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Bactris (BAHK-triss)
glandulosa (glahn-doo-LOH-sah)
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Costa Rica. Bactris glandulosa, entire leaf form? Photo by Jeff in Costa Rica, edric
Scientific Classification
Genus: Bactris (BAHK-triss)
glandulosa (glahn-doo-LOH-sah)
Subspecies: var. baileyana
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary & clustering.
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Bactris glandulosa var. baileyana is found in Costa Rica, Panama, and Colombia.
Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica. Photo by Dr. Reinaldo Aguilar.
Lowland to montane forest, usually below 1000 m elevation. Bactris glandulosa var. baileyana; Costa Rica (Cartago, Puntarenas) and Panama (Chiriqúi, Veraguas). Lowland to montane forest, 100-1500 m elevation. (Henderson, A.J. 2000)/Palmweb.


Stems solitary & clustering, often caespitose (growing in tufts or clumps), 1.5-5 m tall, 2-4.5 cm diam., spiny. Leaves 4-6; leaf spines scattered, black or yellowish brown, terete, to 5 cm long, dense on sheath, fewer on lateral surfaces of petiole and abaxial surface of rachis, or absent from petiole and rachis; sheath 26-86 cm long; ocrea not seen; petiole (8) 16-80 cm long; rachis (0.4)1-1.7 m long; pinnae 14-29 per side (or occasionally leaf simple), irregularly arranged in clusters of 2-7, spreading in different planes, linear to elliptic, both surfaces (or sometimes only abaxially) bearing a fine, short, golden pubescence; middle pinnae 30-60 x 3-7 cm. Inflorescences interfoliar; peduncle 8-13 cm long, recurved, spiny; prophyll 8-16 cm; peduncular bract 15-30 cm long, densely hirsute with fine, soft to stiff, black spines and golden hairs; rachis 3-6 cm long; rachillae (24-)40-50, 5-11 cm long, filamentous, at anthesis densely covered with brownish or whitish moniliform trichomes and other trichomes; triads more or less regularly arranged (but often with solitary staminate flowers interspersed) on proximal ca. half or more of rachillae, and there tending to be absent from adaxial side of rachillae (paired or solitary staminate flowers only on distal ca. half of rachillae); staminate flowers 3.5-4 mm long, persistent; sepal lobes 0.5-1 mm long; petals 3.5-4 mm long; stamens 6; pistillode absent; pistillate flowers to 4 mm long; calyx cupular, to 1.5 mm long; corolla tubular, to 3 mm long, usually pubescent and spinulose, rarely glabrescent; staminodes absent;fruits 0.5-1.7 cm diam., obovoid, red; mesocarp starchy; endocarp turbinate, black or white, the pores more or less equidistant or sterile pores displaced longitudinally; endocarp fibers absent; fruiting perianth with minute calyx and irregularly lobed corolla, without staminodial ring. (Henderson, A.J. 2000)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

Bactris glandulosa var. baileyana; Leaves usually pinnate; pinnae sparsely pilose abaxially. Inflorescences interfoliar; pistillate corolla glabrous or minutely spinulose. (Henderson, A.J. 2000)/Palmweb.

Bactris glandulosa is diagnosed by its densely hirsute peduncular bract with fine, soft to stiff, black spines and golden hairs, and (24-)40-50 filamentous rachillae that are 5-11 cm long. See de Nevers et al. (1996) for a discussion of the application of this name and priority of the binomials Bactrisfusca and B. glandulosa. Two forms of this species occur, often together. Here I recognize these two forms as varieties, following de Nevers et al. (1996). (Henderson, A.J. 2000)/Palmweb.


A palm for the understorey of the tropical, or perhaps warm temperate garden.

Comments and Curiosities

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).

Henderson, A.J.2000. Bactris (Palmae). New York Botanical Garden.

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

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