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Useful Tropical Plants

Couroupita guianensis

Aubl.

Lecythidaceae

+ Synonyms

Couroupita peruviana O.Berg

Common Name: Cannonball Tree

Couroupita guianensis
Close up of flowers
Photograph by: Ajna Fern
Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis Couroupita guianensis

General Information

Cannonball tree is a deciduous tree with a dense, oblong crown; it can grow from 8 - 30 metres tall[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
412
Title
Illustrated Guide to the Trees of Peru
Publication
 
Author
Pennington, T.D.; Reynel, C. & Daza, A.
Publisher
David Hunt; Sherbourne, England.
Year
2004
ISBN
0 9538134 3 6
Description
A very terse guide to the trees of Peru, managing to give basic guides to a large number of genera, with more detail on a few species in each genus.
,
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
]. The cylindrical bole is 30 - 50cm in diameter[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
].
The tree is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials. A very ornamental tree, especially when cloaked in flowers or the large fruits which are produced on the trunk. There is, however, the disadvantage that the large, heavy fruits, which have a foul smell, can cause accidents when they fall from the tree[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
].
This species is very widespread, but is not common anywhere. The habitat of this species has declined widely because of clearing for settlement, timber and agriculture, resulting in populations becoming threatened at a national level. The Panamanian subpopulation is confined to a few trees in two provinces. The plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2013)[
338
Title
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.iucnredlist.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A list of plants under threat and facing possible extinction, usually with brief details of the threats and information on habitat.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References


Range

S. America - Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, the Guyanas; C. America Panama, Costa Rica

Habitat

Along the sides of rivers and in swampy areas at elevations below 500 metres in Peru[
412
Title
Illustrated Guide to the Trees of Peru
Publication
 
Author
Pennington, T.D.; Reynel, C. & Daza, A.
Publisher
David Hunt; Sherbourne, England.
Year
2004
ISBN
0 9538134 3 6
Description
A very terse guide to the trees of Peru, managing to give basic guides to a large number of genera, with more detail on a few species in each genus.
].

Properties

Conservation StatusLeast Concern
Edibility Rating *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height30.00 m
Growth RateMedium
Cultivation StatusOrnamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Plants are very susceptible to frost[
377
Title
Trade Winds Fruit
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The on-line catalogue of a company selling seeds. Gives descriptions, photos and uses of a very wide range of fruit and other food-producing plants plus ornamentals.
].
Prefers a sunny position[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
]. A plant of moist to wet soils in the wild, though it can also succeed in dry soils[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
].
Young plants usually establish well and can be 2.5 metres tall by the time they are two years old[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw[
377
Title
Trade Winds Fruit
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The on-line catalogue of a company selling seeds. Gives descriptions, photos and uses of a very wide range of fruit and other food-producing plants plus ornamentals.
]. Although the fruits are edible, the smell of the white flesh discourages most people from trying them, so they are only occasionally eaten[
377
Title
Trade Winds Fruit
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The on-line catalogue of a company selling seeds. Gives descriptions, photos and uses of a very wide range of fruit and other food-producing plants plus ornamentals.
].

Medicinal

The pulp of the wood is used, after exposure, in the treatment of skin diseases of animals[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
].

The fruit pulp and the seeds are ingested as a refreshant[
348
Title
Medicinal Plants of the Guianas
Publication
 
Author
DeFilipps, R. A.; Maina, S. L.; & Crepin, J.
Website
http://botany.si.edu/bdg/medicinal/index.html
Publisher
Smithsonian Museum
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A down-loadable PDF document of a book in pre-publication awaiting illustration. An excellent, if rather terse, guide to the traditional medicinal uses of the plants of the region
].

Other Uses

The flowers have a wonderful smell and can be used to scent perfumes and cosmetics[
377
Title
Trade Winds Fruit
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The on-line catalogue of a company selling seeds. Gives descriptions, photos and uses of a very wide range of fruit and other food-producing plants plus ornamentals.
].

The hard shells of the fruit are sometimes used as containers[
377
Title
Trade Winds Fruit
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.tradewindsfruit.com/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The on-line catalogue of a company selling seeds. Gives descriptions, photos and uses of a very wide range of fruit and other food-producing plants plus ornamentals.
].

The heartwood is light yellow; it is not clearly demarcated from the sapwood. The texture is medium to coarse; the grain straight or interlocked; there is an unpleasant odour from the green wood. The wood is light to very light in weight; very soft to soft; not durable, being susceptible to fungi, dry wood borers and termites. It seasons somewhat slowly, with only a slight risk of checking or distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. The wood works easily with ordinary tools, though there is a tendency to woolliness and filling is recommended in order to obtain a good finish; nailing and screwing are poor; gluing is correct. The wood is used for various lower value purposes including toys, boxes and crates, matches, interior joinery and panelling, furniture components, wood-ware, floats, blockboard and fibre boards[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
,
848
Title
Tropix 7
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://tropix.cirad.fr/en
Publisher
CIRAD
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line guide to the timbers of 245 species of trees.
].

Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon after harvesting as possible, it does not require pre-treatment. Seeds can be sown in semi-shade, either in nursery beds or in individual containers[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
]. When fresh seed is used, a germination rate in excess of 80% usually occurs within 8 - 15 days[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
]. Seedlings should be placed in individual containers by the time they are 6 - 10cm tall, and are ready to plant out when 7 months old[
419
Title
Brazilian Trees. Volume 1. 4th Edition.
Publication
 
Author
Lorenzi. H.
Publisher
Instituto Plantarum De Estudos Da Flora; Brazil.
Year
2002
ISBN
85-86714-17-8
Description
Information on 350 species of Brazilian trees. Stunning photographs of each species, brief details on the plant, its uses and how to grow it from seed. A superb work, with the minor irritation that the translation from Portuguese is not of the best.
].

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