Desmoncus mitis Mart., Hist. Nat. Palm. 2: 90 (1824)

Primary tabs

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Distribution

Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (http://www.nhm.ac.uk/hosted_sites/tdwg/geogrphy.html)
Boliviapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Brazil Northpresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Brazil West-Centralpresent (Henderson, A., A revision of Desmoncus (Arecaceae) in Phytotaxa 35. 2011)C
Colombiapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Ecuadorpresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Perupresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Widespread in the W Amazon region, from Venezuela to Bolivia, below 1000 m elevation. (Borchsenius F., Borgtoft-Pedersen H. and Baslev H. 1998. Manual to the Palms of Ecuador. AAU Reports 37. Department of Systematic Botany, University of Aarhus, Denmark in collaboration with Pontificia Universidad Catalica del Ecuador)A

Discussion

  • A polymorphic species divided into five varieties.Notes for Ecuador. The Ecuadorian plants belong to var. mitis. (Borchsenius F., Borgtoft-Pedersen H. and Baslev H. 1998. Manual to the Palms of Ecuador. AAU Reports 37. Department of Systematic Botany, University of Aarhus, Denmark in collaboration with Pontificia Universidad Catalica del Ecuador)A
  • Subspecific variation:-Specimens occur in the western and central Amazon region in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Brazil. Based on geography, as well as sheaths, number of pinnae, and cirri development, it is possible to recognize four subgroups-one from subAndean regions of southern Peru and Bolivia having finely and densely spiny sheaths, numerous, linear or lanceolate pinnae, and well-developed cirri; the second from the western Amazon region, mostly from the southwestern Amazon region of Brazil but also in adjacent Peru and Bolivia having non- or scarcely spiny sheaths, few, ovate pinnae, and poorlydeveloped cirri; the third from the western Amazon region of Peru and in adjacent Colombia and Brazil having non-spiny sheaths, few, ovate pinnae, and usually well-developed cirri; and the fourth from the western Amazon region in Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru, having non-spiny sheaths, numerous, lanceolate pinnae, and well-developed cirri. ANOVA shows that for pair wise comparison probabilities, six variables (plant height, petiole length, rachis length, rachis width, basal pinna length, basal pinna width) differ significantly (P <0.05) between at least one pair of subgroups, and one variable (number of pinnae) differs amongst all four subgroups. Based on these results, specimens from the four subgroups are recognized as subspecies (subspp. ecirratus, leptospadix, mitis, rurrenabaquensis). (Henderson, A., A revision of Desmoncus (Arecaceae) in Phytotaxa 35. 2011)C

Description

  • Understorey liana. Stem solitary, to 10 m long, ca. 1 cm in diameter. Leaves 60-70 cm long; rachis armed with short, recurved spines; pinnae 15-20 on each side, inserted in groups of 1-5, but spreading more or less in the same plane, lanceolate, 9-13 cm long and 1-1.5 cm wide; distal part of the rachis with 3-5 pairs of pinnae transformed into climbing hooks, each hook 1.5-3 cm long. Inflorescence ca. 40 cm long, spineless, with 5-7 distichous branches, these to 7 cm long. Fruit red, elliptic, ca. 10 x 7 mm. (Borchsenius F., Borgtoft-Pedersen H. and Baslev H. 1998. Manual to the Palms of Ecuador. AAU Reports 37. Department of Systematic Botany, University of Aarhus, Denmark in collaboration with Pontificia Universidad Catalica del Ecuador)A
  • Plants 2.7(0.7-8.5) m tall; stems 0.6(0.3-1.1) cm diameter. Leaf petioles 3.9(0.5-10.5) cm long; rachises 30.4(8.0-76.0) cm long, 2.3(1.1-3.8) mm wide, the spines usually <1 cm long, mostly abaxial, recurved with markedly swollen bases; pinnae 8(2-25) per side of rachis, without a beard of spines at the bases, with uneven surfaces at the bases adaxially, usually covered with spinules and/or dense tomentum; basal pinna 12.3(3.5- 27.5) cm long, 2.5(0.2-6.5) cm wide; cirri well-developed, with acanthophylls, or cirri poorly-developed, the rachis terminating in a short cirrus, acanthophylls present or absent, or cirri absent, the rachis terminating beyond the distalmost pair of pinnae in a short ?stub?, with few spines abaxially, mostly on proximal part only (rarely, when cirri poorly-developed, without spines), with no intermediate acanthophylls present, usually with a wide gap between pinnae and acanthophylls (i.e., gap wider than that between adjacent acanthophylls). Inflorescences with the rachis smooth, not twisted, narrower than the few, distantly spaced and alternate rachillae, each rachilla usually briefly adnate proximally to the rachis and with an irregular bracteole displaced onto the rachis, with or without an axillary pulvinus; peduncles 1.2(0.6-3.1) mm wide; peduncular bracts 24.2(14.6-37.0) cm long, narrow, elongate, ribbed, scarcely brown tomentose, without spines (rarely with few spines); rachillae 5(3-7), glabrous or scarcely tomentose initially; proximal rachillae 5.3(2.0-9.0) cm long, 0.8(0.5-1.5) mm wide; stamens 6; fruits 10.9(8.9-15.7) mm long, 7.1(5.5-10.9) mm wide, fruit surfaces uneven with numerous, subepidermal, short, often branching (Y-shaped) fibers; fruiting corollas splitting irregularly into 3 lobes, the lobes often splitting again; endocarps narrowly ellipsoid with rounded apices, the pores lateral. (Henderson, A., A revision of Desmoncus (Arecaceae) in Phytotaxa 35. 2011)C

Use Record

  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: A decoction of its roots is used to treat an ill-defined sickness called " Mal-viento". (Balslev, H., and A. Barfod, Ecuadorean palms- an overview. 1987)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Medicinal and VeterinaryCultural diseases and disordersRootIndigenousSionaEcuador
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Alimentación humana. Fruto (mesocarpo). Es consumido cuando comienza a madurar. Cultural. Tallo (espinas). Las espinas del cirro, (porción apical del tallo), se emplean para quitarse la barba. Cultural. Tallo. Se emplea en la elaboración de pequeñas cerbatanas para insectos. Cultural. Tallo. La cola de los animales cazados es impregnada con el jugo obtenido de los tallos machacados para asegurar la caza. (Armesilla, P.J., Usos de las palmeras (Arecaceae),en la Reserva de la Biosfera-Tierra Comunitaria de Orígen Pilón Lajas, (Bolivia). 2006)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    CulturalRecreationalStemIndigenousTsimane/MoseteneBolivia
    Human FoodFoodFruitsIndigenousTsimane/MoseteneBolivia
    CulturalCosmeticsSpinesIndigenousTsimane/MoseteneBolivia
    CulturalRitualStemIndigenousTsimane/MoseteneBolivia
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Alimento an. Fruto. (Cerón, C.E., Etnobiología de los Cofanes de Dureno, provincia de Sucumbíos, Ecuador. 1995)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Animal FoodWildlife attractantFruitsIndigenousQuichuaEcuador
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Artesanal. Tallo. (Cerón, C.E., A. Payaguaje, D. Payaguaje et al., Etnobotánica Secoya. 2005)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsOtherStemIndigenousSecoyaEcuador
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Desmoncus mitis Mart. var. leptospadix (Mart.) A.J.Hend. Español: Vara-casha. Urarina: Ucsisi Usos: Herramientas y utensilios — Se utiliza el tallo en la fabricación de asientos, partes de muebles y para canastas; además el tallo sirve como cuerda para atar por ejemplo hojas para techo cuando se las transportan del bosque y como tendedero para la ropa; en algunos casos se utilizan los frutos como cebo para la pesca. Comunidad: 3–10, 12–14, 16–20, 23–30. Voucher: H. Balslev 6618. (Balslev, H., C. Grandez, et al., Useful palms (Arecaceae) near Iquitos, Peruvian Amazon. 2008)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Animal FoodFish baitFruitsNot identifiedN/APeru
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticStemNot identifiedN/APeru
    Utensils and ToolsRopeStemNot identifiedN/APeru
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Desmoncus mitis Mart. var. mitis Español: Vara-casha. Urarina: Ucsisi Usos: Herramientas y utensilios — El tallo se utiliza en la fabricación de asientos, partes de muebles y para canastas; el tallo también sirve como cuerda para atar, por ejemplo, hojas para techo cuando se las transportan del bosque y como tendedero para la ropa; en algunos casos se utilizan los frutos como cebo para la pesca. Comunidad: 3–10, 12–14, 16–20, 23–30. Voucher: H. Balslev 7430. (Balslev, H., C. Grandez, et al., Useful palms (Arecaceae) near Iquitos, Peruvian Amazon. 2008)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticStemNot identifiedN/APeru
    Animal FoodFish baitFruitsNot identifiedN/APeru
    Utensils and ToolsRopeStemNot identifiedN/APeru
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Desmoncus mitis Mart. var. tenerrimus (Mart. ex Drude) A.J.Hend. Español: Vara-casha. Urarina: Ucsisi Usos: Herramientas y utensilios — El tallo se utiliza en la fabricación de asientos, partes de muebles y para canastas; el tallo también sirve como cuerda para atar, por ejemplo, hojas para techo cuando se las transportan del bosque y como tendedero para la ropa; en algunos casos se utilizan los frutos como cebo para la pesca. Comunidad: 3, 5–10, 12–14, 16–20, 23–30. Voucher: H. Balslev 6608. (Balslev, H., C. Grandez, et al., Useful palms (Arecaceae) near Iquitos, Peruvian Amazon. 2008)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticStemNot identifiedN/APeru
    Utensils and ToolsRopeStemNot identifiedN/APeru
    Animal FoodFish baitFruitsNot identifiedN/APeru
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Desmoncus mitis Mart. Vernacular name: Nawañecapuyo. Voucher: Macía et al. #3166. Use. M: A decoction of the stem and crushed pinnae is drunk against body pain and colds. (Macía, M.J., Multiplicity in palm uses by the Huaorani of Amazonian Ecuador. 2004)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Medicinal and VeterinaryNot specifiedStemIndigenousHuaoraniEcuador
    Medicinal and VeterinaryNot specifiedEntire leafIndigenousHuaoraniEcuador
    Medicinal and VeterinaryRespiratory systemEntire leafIndigenousHuaoraniEcuador
    Medicinal and VeterinaryRespiratory systemStemIndigenousHuaoraniEcuador
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: Los tallos partidos y pulidos se usan para manufacturar cestas, canastas, esterillas de sillas y otros artículos de artesanía. (Vásquez, M., and J. B. Vásquez, La extraccíon de productos forestales diferentes de la madera en el ambito de Iquitos-Perú. 1998)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    Utensils and ToolsDomesticStemNot identifiedN/APeru
  • Desmoncus mitis Mart.: This plant and a larger variety with similar thorns are referred to in a myth that tells how this vine was used by "supai" (forest spirits) to make traps to catch people (…). The thorn ("Ansilbara") would catch peoples hair, trapping them until the "supai" came to kill and eat them. The myth is said to have happened in "the time we were not good christians, when we were savages". (Borchsenius F., Borgtoft-Pedersen H. and Baslev H. 1998. Manual to the Palms of Ecuador. AAU Reports 37. Department of Systematic Botany, University of Aarhus, Denmark in collaboration with Pontificia Universidad Catalica del Ecuador)
    Use CategoryUse Sub CategoryPlant PartHuman GroupEthnic GroupCountry
    CulturalRitualEntire plantIndigenousQuichuaEcuador

Bibliography

    A. Borchsenius F., Borgtoft-Pedersen H. and Baslev H. 1998. Manual to the Palms of Ecuador. AAU Reports 37. Department of Systematic Botany, University of Aarhus, Denmark in collaboration with Pontificia Universidad Catalica del Ecuador
    B. World Checklist of Arecaceae
    C. Henderson, A., A revision of Desmoncus (Arecaceae) in Phytotaxa 35. 2011