Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Sterculia apetala
(Jacq.) Karst., Malvaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results:  Evaluate, score: 4 (Go to the risk assessment)

Other Latin names:  Helicteres apetala Jacq.; Sterculia carthaginensis Cav.; Sterculia chicha A. St.-Hil.

Common name(s): [more details]

English: French peanut, Panama tree

French: sterculier de Panama

Spanish: bellota, chichá, comoruco

Habit:  tree

Description:  "Tree sometimes attaining 30 meters and developing a tall straight trunk, the densely leafy crown depressed and spreading; petioles to 2 dm. long, as the leaves beneath early more or less tomentose but at least in Peru promptly glabrate, the stellate trichomes scattered and inconspicuous unless on the nerves and veins; leaves often 3 dm. broad, deeply 3-5-lobed, the broad lobes rounded-obtuse or acutish; panicles often equaling the petioles, apparently crowded typically; calyx campanulate, about 2.5 cm. wide at the flaring top, 1.5-2 cm. long, yellowish with purple dots and lines; fruiting carpels tomentulose without, hispid within, usually about a dm. long with 2-4 large black ellipsoid seeds"  (Macbride, 1966; 3A/2:664).

"This deciduous tree has palmately 3-5-lobed leaves that are densely hairy on the underside, and panicles that appear with the new foliage, bearing flowers 1 inch in diameter, yellowish blotched red, with 5-6 triangular lobes that are not reflexed.  The woody, 4-inch long, reddish pods have irritating hairs lining the inside and 4-6 blackish, 1 inch long seeds along the margins"  (Staples & Herbst, 2005; p. 543).

"This species has large, alternate leaves with five lobes; yellow flowers with purple spots; large, woody follicles with up to five divisions, lined with irritating hairs, and black seeds" (Oppenheimer, 2003; p. 26).

Habitat/ecology:  In Hawai‘i (Maui), numerous seedlings and saplings are growing in areas adjacent to plantations and slowly spreading  (Oppenheimer, 2003; p. 26).

Propagation:  Seed

Native range:  Tropical America (Oppenheimer, 2003; p. 26).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Oppenheimer, Hank L. (2003) (p. 26)
West Maui. Voucher cited: Oppenheimer & R. Bartlett H60129 (BISH, PTBG), Oppenheimer H79906 (BISH)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
cultivated
Lau, Alex/Frohlich, Danielle (2012) (p. 22)
Voucher cited: OED 2009020401 (BISH)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Costa Rica (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Guatemala (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Honduras (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Nicaragua (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Central America
Central America (Pacific rim)
Panama (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Singapore
Singapore
Singapore (Republic of) introduced
cultivated
Chong, Kwek Yan/Tan, Hugh T. W./Corlett, Richard T. (2009) (p. 81)
Cultivated only
South America (Pacific rim)
South America (Pacific rim)
Colombia (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
South America (Pacific rim)
South America (Pacific rim)
Perú (Republic of) native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)


Need more info? Have questions? Comments? Information to contribute? Contact PIER! (pier@hear.org)

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This page was created on 12 FEB 2010 and was last updated on 27 APR 2010.