Bactris ana-juliae Cascante in Palms 44: 146. 2000

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (
Costa Rica present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)A


  • Known only from the type locality on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, on the Fila Tinamaste, Perez Zeledon; between 900-1050 m. The forest in this area has been severely fragmented, but some remnants are located on top of the Fila Tinamaste, a rocky formation that arises abruptly in the landscape. The climatic conditions on the top of the "Fila" form a certain type of microclimate, which is very humid and characteristic of a cloud forest. The palm community in the remnants is mainly composed of understory species, such as: Asterogyne martiana, Bactris herrerana, B. dianeura, Chamaedorea pinnatifrons, C. pumila, Geonoma ferruginea and Synechanthus warscewiczii.
    (Cascante, A. 2000: Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica. – Palms 44(3): 146-150)B


  • Bactris ana-iuliae shares similar floral characteristics with B. hondurensis Standl., and B. dianeura Burret; these species have a short rachis (<3.0 cm long.) in the inflorescense, and possess relatively few rachillae (<17), in relation to the other species of Bactris in Costa Rica.

    Bactris ana-juliae resembles B. hondurensis, a common species in the Atlantic side of the country, in the general morphology of its inflorescence. In the latter, the peduncle is regularly erect in fruiting vs. recurved in the new species, and possesses fewer rachillae (3-9 vs. 8-12). The main differences between B. ana-juliae and B. hondurensis are in the leaf morphology of the former. It usually has more pinnae per side (7-10 vs. 5 or fewer) than the pinnate form of B. hondurensis, also the middle pinnae are wider (4.2-5.1 vs. 1.2-4.0 cm); the lamina is pubescent on both sides (less dense above), and it lacks the cross veined pattern present in the leaf blade of B. hondurensis. Moreover, in B. ana-iuliae the leaflets have an aristate tip (3.5-7.0 cm long.), opposed to an acuminate tip in B. hondurensis, and the spines on the petiole and leaf rachis are yellow with the ends darker, although B. hondurensis may have yellow spines, but in younger leaves.

    Bactris ana-iuliae is easily separated from B. dianeura by the leaf shape. This new species possesses fewer pinnae per side (8-10 vs. 12-20), these are sigmoid vs. linear-lanceolate, pubescent vs. glabrous, and they lack cross veined blades.

    The sigmoid and convex pinnae with a long tip pointing downward is a striking feature of B. ana-juliae in natural conditions. The pinnae have a shiny dark green color above that becomes lighter near the tip of the blade. At the type locality the population produces flowers in March and April; fruiting occurs from November to March. (Cascante, A. 2000: Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica. – Palms 44(3): 146-150)B


  • Stem cespitose 1 .8-3.0 m tall, stems 4 -6, 1.2-1.5 cm diam., internodes usually spiny. Leaves 5-8, sheaths to 16.0 cm long., covered with black spines; petiole glabrous or with a short whitish pubescence, 11.2-16.0 (-25.5) cm long; spines yellow with the extremes dark brownish tips, (0.5-) 1.6-3.5 cm long, the basal portion of the petiole with more abundant, shorter spines. Lamina rachis (33.0-) 41.0-54.0 cm long, bearing a whitish pubescence and spines abaxially as on the petiole, pinnate, the pinnae (4-) 7-10 per side, irregularly arranged in groups of 2-3 and spreading in different planes; terminal pinnae larger than the middle ones, 17.0-31.0 (-39.5) long, and 5.5-14.5 cm wide, apex apiculate; middle pinnae sigmoid and convex, 15.0-22.5 (-28.7) cm long, and 4.2-5.1 (-7.0) cm wide, whitish pubescence on both sides, with (1-) 2 prominent main veins, apex strongly aristate, 3.5-7.0 cm long, and bent downward. Inflorescence infrafoliar, peduncle 5.0-8.0 cm long, 5.0 mm wide, recurved at anthesis, spinulose on the distal part, prophyll 8.0 cm long, peduncular bract 11.0-14.6 cm long, covered with short blackish-brown spines, rachis short (0.7-) 1.4-1.7 cm long, rachillae 8-12, 3.2-5.0 cm long, covered with glandular hairs; triads irregularly arranged. Staminate flowers not seen. Pistillate flowers sessile, sepals connate, to 1.5 mm long, glabrous; corolla tubular, 2.1-2.8 mm long, glabrous and striate (when dry). Fruits obovate, to 1.2 cm long and 1.0 cm diam. the stigmatic residue prominent, orange-red when mature, glabrous and striate, corolla evident in fruit, irregularly divided, to 3 mm long. (Cascante, A. 2000: Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica. – Palms 44(3): 146-150)B

Materials Examined

  • Costa Rica. San Jose: Perez Zeledon, Fila Tinamaste, semi-cloudy forest, remnants on the top of the hill, 900-1050 m, 9° 17' 40" N - 83° 46' 00", 2 December 1998, A. Cascante et al. 1472 (CR); 25 March 1998, O. Valverde 773 (CR, MO, USJ).
    Costa Rica. San Jose: Perez Zeledon, Fila Tinamaste (17 km from San Isidro in road to Dominical), 1000 m , 9° 17' 40" N, 83° 46' 00" W, 28 May 1998. O. Valverde 993 (Holotypus CR; isotypi MO, USJ). (Cascante, A. 2000: Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica. – Palms 44(3): 146-150)B


    A. World Checklist of Arecaceae
    B. Cascante, A. 2000: Additions to the genus Bactris (Arecaceae) of Mesoamerica. – Palms 44(3): 146-150