Zamia amblyphyllidia D.W.Stev.
Zamia erosa is an evergreen shrub with a subterranean, tuberous stem 3 - 25cm in diameter. The stem is topped by a crown of 2 - 15 leaves that can each be up to 150cm long[
The stems have been used in the past as a source of starch for local people.
This species is very rare in the wild, and extinct in parts of its range, although it is quite common in cultivation. It has been affected by habitat destruction as a result of road building and land clearance for agricultural practices. The plant is classified as 'Vulnerable' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2011)[
The fleshy seeds contain a toxic glycoside that causes headaches, vomiting, stomach pains and diarrhoea if ingested[
The juice from the plant is very poisonous[
The starch obtained from the stem is poisonous unless thoroughly cooked[
Caribbean - Cuba, Jamaica, Puerto Rico.
Grassland, ravines and open forest dominated by species of Pinus and Quercus. Plants occur on steep limestone hills and among limestone rocks[
Succeeds in full sun or in light shade[
]. Requires a well drained soil[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if seed is required[
The large fleshy root is hidden in crevices of the jagged rocks, but is dug out by local people and used in the manufacture of starch[
]. This is ground into a powder and used to make bread etc. It needs to be thoroughly cooked in order to destroy a poisonous principle[
Seed - remove the fleshy coating and surface sow on damp sand. Germination is best at around 23 - 29°c[
]. Pot up young seedlings into a rich, moist medium, as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow on at high temperatures without any check to growth until 2 - 3 leaves have been produced at one time, otherwise they may enter dormancy[
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