Welfia Regia

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Welfia (well-FEE-ah)
Regia (reh-JEE-ah)
Wr2008-05-05 10-21-46.jpg
Rain Forest Aerial Tram, Braulio Carrillo National Park, Costa Rica. Photo by Ryan D. Gallivan.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Welfia (well-FEE-ah)
Regia (reh-JEE-ah)
Welfia georgii
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names
Amargo Palm, Corozo, Conga, palma conga, palma tigre.

Habitat and Distribution

Welfia regia is a common subcanopy palm that is abundant in Costa Rican
Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad - INBio, Near the La Selva Biological Station, Osa peninsula, Costa Rica. Photo by Dr. Reinaldo Aguilar.
lowlands and tropical wet forests. In La Selva, Costa Rica it has been seen to reach densities of 54 adults/ha. On our trip to Costa Rica we saw these palms everywhere! The trails at La Selva Biological Station contained an abundance of these palms. In fact, when we asked our tour guide, Kenneth, where we could find them, he immediately turned around and pointed to a young red-colored W. regia standing beside us. Just a few steps further into the forest there was a full grown palm. See link. (tropicalbiology.net)


Palm tree that reaches from 5 to 20 m in height. Single trunk of reddish brown color with numerous ring shaped scarrings. Ramified inflorescence with yellowish white flowers, oval fruits that turn reddish brown when ripe. (Smithsonian Tropical Research Inst.)

Early on, W. regia develops as a rosette, establishing an axis below the ground of sufficient diameter to support the tree in maturity. Later growth is vertical and does not involve any more growth in diameter. Seedlings can be found from major light gaps to full canopy coverage, however those seedlings found in high-light environments grow more rapidly. The young palms are typically red in color, whereas the older palms have green leaves. These trees are reproductive between 6 to 20 meters in height and don't usually exceed 20 meters. Growth is generally linear with respect to size. The number of years it takes for the tree to achieve maximum height, 20 meters, is 31 years for the fastest growing trees and up to 80 years for the slow growing trees. (tropicalbiology.net) Editing by edric.


Cold Hardiness Zone: 10a

Comments and Curiosities

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

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

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

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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