Alpinia silvicola Britton
Alpinia thyrsoidea (Ruiz & Pav.) Steud.
Amomum thyrsoideum Ruiz & Pav.
Ethanium thyrsodeum (Ruiz & Pav.) Kuntze
Renealmia cardenasii Rusby
Renealmia geostachys K.Schum.
Renealmia platycolea K.Schum.
Renealmia silvicola (Britton) Steyerm. & Agostini
Renealmia uleana Loes.
Renealmia thyrsoidea is a herbaceous perennial plant producing clumps of erect stems 0.8 - 5 metres tall from rhizomes that can be 10 - 30mm thick[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of ink. It is cultivated in home gardens in Ecuador[
S. America - northern Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, the Guyanas; C. America - Panama, Costa Rica; Caribbean - Trinidad.
Inundated and non-inundated forests from the lowlands to the cloud forests at elevations up to 3,000 metres[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
The stringy fibres inside the fruit are edible. They are boiled and eaten with manioc cakes[
The flesh of the fruit is mixed with rice meal, or can be added to soups, where it imparts a pleasant flavour[
]. It is considered to have nutritive properties[
]. The globose to ellipsoid, black-purple fruit can be 15 - 45mm long and 7 - 25mm wide with a fleshy fruit wall around 3 - 7mm thick[
The most interesting application of the fruit is that the seeds, when toasted and mashed, are made into a cafe' type of beverage[
It is believed that pains may be alleviated by applying a heated leaf to the place where pain is felt[
The dried leaves are often placed over cuts or scratches to act as a sort of bandage or cover[
The seeds, when toasted and mashed, are made into a coffee type of beverage which, when taken with coffee, are said to aid in childbirth and serve as a remedy for chills and colds[
The plant is valued in treating snakebite by crushing the stem and drinking an infusion once a day to prevent swelling[
The fruit, which has a thick, fleshy, purple-black flesh, is used to make an ink[
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