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Useful Tropical Plants

Ormosia coccinea

(Aubl.) Jacks.

Fabaceae

+ Synonyms

Robinia coccinea Aubl.

Common Name:

Ormosia coccinea
Looking up the trunk into the crown
Photograph by: Reinaldo Aguilar
Creative Commons License
Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea Ormosia coccinea

General Information

Ormosia coccinea is an evergreen or briefly deciduous tree with a large, moderately dense, rounded crown; it can grow 25 - 35 metres tall. The straight, cylindrical bole is 40 - 70cm in diameter and generally free of buttresses except in some large specimens[
315
Title
Flora of Barro Colorado Island
Publication
 
Author
Croat. Thomas B.
Website
http://biogeodb.stri.si.edu/bioinformatics/croat/home
Publisher
Stanford University Press
Year
1978
ISBN
0-8047-0950-5
Description
A very good flora of an area in Panama. Written some years ago, so some of the names have been changed. The book is out of print, but the whole flora is now available on the web.
,
333
Title
Tree Species of Panama
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ctfs.arnarb.harvard.edu/webatlas/mainframe.php?order=s
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Factsheets on all the tree and shrub species of Panama, giving identification guide, brief guide to the species and some uses. A vast, but rather incomplete work as of 15/07/09.
,
510
Title
Trees of Costa Rica's Pacific Slope
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cds.ed.cr/teachers/harmon/page1.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Information on over 80 species of tree from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.
,
749
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium. Vol. 32
Publication
 
Author
Rudd V.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
Monographs of several species in the family Fabaceae, including the Ormosia that occur in the Americas. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
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.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for its wood.

Known Hazards

The plants, but especially the seed and perhaps also the bark, of many if not all species in this genus contain alkaloids and are toxic[
864
Title
Botanical Museum Leaflets Vol 21
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Botanical Museum; Cambridge, Massachusetts
Year
1963 - 1967
ISBN
 
Description
A series of botanical articles. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].
The seeds of this species are considered locally to be highly poisonous[
864
Title
Botanical Museum Leaflets Vol 21
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Botanical Museum; Cambridge, Massachusetts
Year
1963 - 1967
ISBN
 
Description
A series of botanical articles. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Botanical References

749
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium. Vol. 32
Publication
 
Author
Rudd V.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
Monographs of several species in the family Fabaceae, including the Ormosia that occur in the Americas. It can be downloaded from the Internet.

Range

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

Habitat

Rainforests, in sandy soils[
749
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium. Vol. 32
Publication
 
Author
Rudd V.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
Monographs of several species in the family Fabaceae, including the Ormosia that occur in the Americas. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. The form Ormosia coccinea subsimplex is also found at the edges of savannahs and in restinga (coastal forest)[
749
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium. Vol. 32
Publication
 
Author
Rudd V.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
Monographs of several species in the family Fabaceae, including the Ormosia that occur in the Americas. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Properties

Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitSemi-deciduous Tree
Height25.00 m
PollinatorsInsects
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details


Usually found in well-drained soils in the wild[
510
Title
Trees of Costa Rica's Pacific Slope
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cds.ed.cr/teachers/harmon/page1.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Information on over 80 species of tree from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.
].
The seedpods open whilst still on the tree. The seeds, however, often remain in the canopy for months after this, resting in the open pods until the wind or some animal dislodges them - or until the pod rots and falls to earth. Once in the moist soil, the seed germinates immediately[
510
Title
Trees of Costa Rica's Pacific Slope
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cds.ed.cr/teachers/harmon/page1.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Information on over 80 species of tree from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.
].
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria; these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
755
Title
Nodulation Plants in GRIN Taxonomy
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ars-grin.gov/~sbmljw/cgi-bin/taxnodul.pl?language=en
Publisher
United States Department of Agriculture
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An online database listing plants that have either positive or negative reports on root and stem nodulation with nitrogen-fixing bacteria.
].

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

None known

Other Uses

The interestingly patterned and attractive seeds are used by artisans in the fabrication of decorative jewelry and other trinkets[
333
Title
Tree Species of Panama
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ctfs.arnarb.harvard.edu/webatlas/mainframe.php?order=s
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Factsheets on all the tree and shrub species of Panama, giving identification guide, brief guide to the species and some uses. A vast, but rather incomplete work as of 15/07/09.
,
510
Title
Trees of Costa Rica's Pacific Slope
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.cds.ed.cr/teachers/harmon/page1.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Information on over 80 species of tree from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.
].

The heartwood is yellow-brown to red-brown, with thin light brown streaks; it is clearly demarcated from the 3 - 15cm wide band of sapwood. The texture is coarse, grain interlocked. The wood is fairly hard to hard, moderately heavy, with good elasticity, moderately durable, and resistant to damage from fungi, dry wood borers and termites. It is slow to dry with a slight risk of checking and distortion, and is moderately stable to poorly stable in service. The wood generally is easy to work, though there are sometimes diffiulties due to the interlocked grain, surfaces are slightly fuzzy and finishing requires care. Peeling and slicing are good, it takes nails and screws well and glues correctly. It is used for furniture, flooring, joinery, heavy carpentry, panelling, veneer and turnery[
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

Like many species within the family Fabaceae, once they have been dried for storage the seeds of this species may benefit from scarification before sowing in order to speed up and improve germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

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