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Useful Tropical Plants

Cordia gerascanthus

L.

Boraginaceae

+ Synonyms

Cerdana gerascanthus (L.) Moldenke

Cordia bracteata A.DC.

Cordia geraschanthoides Kunth

Cordia langlassei Loes.

Cordia rothschuhii Loes.

Gerascanthus gerascanthoides (Kunth) Borhidi

Gerascanthus lanceolatus J.Presl

Gerascanthus vulgaris Mart.

Lithocardium bracteatum Kuntze

Lithocardium gerascanthodes (Kunth) Kuntze

Lithocardium gerascanthus (L.) Kuntze

Purkinjia nodosa C.Presl

Common Name: Spanish Elm

Cordia gerascanthus
Flowers
Photograph by: O. M. Montiel
Creative Commons License
Cordia gerascanthus Cordia gerascanthus Cordia gerascanthus

General Information

Cordia gerascanthus is a large, semi-evergreen tree usually growing 6 - 15 metres tall, but exceptionally up to 30 metres, with a bole up to 30cm in diameter[
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.
,
331
Title
Flora of Guatemala
Publication
 
Author
Standley P.C. & J. A. Steyermark
Website
http://www.archive.org/
Publisher
 
Year
1946 - 1976
ISBN
 
Description
A superb reference, though somewhat dated. Gives lots of plant uses as well as information on plant habit and habitat. The entire flora (13 volumes) can now be downloaded from http://www.archive.org/
,
426
Title
Flowering Plants of Jamaica
Publication
 
Author
Adams. C.D.
Publisher
University of the West Indies; Jamaica.
Year
1972
ISBN
 
Description
A terse treatment of the flowering plants of Jamaica, with a botanical description of each plant, notes on habitat etc.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for its wood and fibre. It has potential for ornament - when its flowers open they cover the trees so densely that their crowns look like mounds of snow[
493
Title
Flora of Yucatan
Publication
 
Author
Standley P.C.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Field Museum of Natural History; Chicago
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
The first flora that was attempted for this area in 1930, so it is obviously lacking information and the Botanical names can be out of date. Still, an excellent work and it records many plant uses. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

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.
,
331
Title
Flora of Guatemala
Publication
 
Author
Standley P.C. & J. A. Steyermark
Website
http://www.archive.org/
Publisher
 
Year
1946 - 1976
ISBN
 
Description
A superb reference, though somewhat dated. Gives lots of plant uses as well as information on plant habit and habitat. The entire flora (13 volumes) can now be downloaded from http://www.archive.org/
,
1903
Title
A Revision of Cordia Section Gerascanthus (Boraginales; Cordiaceae)
Publication
J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 7(1); 55 - 83. 2013
Author
Miller J.S.
Publisher
 
Year
2013
ISBN
 
Description
 

Range

Central America - Costa Rica, through Mesoamerica to northern Mexico; Caribbean - Puerto Rico to Cuba

Habitat

Dry forests; at elevations up to 1,000 metres[
307
Title
Tropical and Subtropical Trees - A Worldwide Encyclopaedic Guide.
Publication
 
Author
Barwick. M.
Publisher
Thames & Hudson, London
Year
2004
ISBN
0-500-51181-0
Description
A superb book, very concise and well written, giving a wealth of information on 400 or more species including descriptions, habitat, cultivation details and plant uses. A wealth of colour photographs bring each plant vividly to life.
,
1903
Title
A Revision of Cordia Section Gerascanthus (Boraginales; Cordiaceae)
Publication
J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 7(1); 55 - 83. 2013
Author
Miller J.S.
Publisher
 
Year
2013
ISBN
 
Description
 
]. Limestone hills, mostly in rather dry areas in Jamaica[
426
Title
Flowering Plants of Jamaica
Publication
 
Author
Adams. C.D.
Publisher
University of the West Indies; Jamaica.
Year
1972
ISBN
 
Description
A terse treatment of the flowering plants of Jamaica, with a botanical description of each plant, notes on habitat etc.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitSemi-deciduous Tree
Height30.00 m
PollinatorsBees, Hummingbirds, Insects
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details


Prefers a moist but freely draining soil and a position in full sun[
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.
].
Plants are triggered into flowering by rain showers that follow a dry period[
307
Title
Tropical and Subtropical Trees - A Worldwide Encyclopaedic Guide.
Publication
 
Author
Barwick. M.
Publisher
Thames & Hudson, London
Year
2004
ISBN
0-500-51181-0
Description
A superb book, very concise and well written, giving a wealth of information on 400 or more species including descriptions, habitat, cultivation details and plant uses. A wealth of colour photographs bring each plant vividly to life.
].

Edible Uses

The brown, ellipsoid fruit is around 7 - 8mm long and 3 - 4mm wide[
1903
Title
A Revision of Cordia Section Gerascanthus (Boraginales; Cordiaceae)
Publication
J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 7(1); 55 - 83. 2013
Author
Miller J.S.
Publisher
 
Year
2013
ISBN
 
Description
 
].
The fruits of most Cordia species are comprised of a thin to fairly thick layer of pulpy, sweetish-tasting flesh surrounding a single seed and are more or less edible[
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.
,
422
Title
Fruits of the Guianan Flora
Publication
 
Author
van Roosmalen. M.G.M.
Publisher
Institute of Systematic Boyany, Utrecht University; Netherlands.
Year
1985
ISBN
90-9000988-4
Description
Terse descriptions of over 1,700 species from the Guianas that bear fruits - not necessarily edible! Often mentions if the fruit is edible, plus gives brief description of habit and habitat.
]. (though some are known to cause gastric disturbances). This species, however, belongs to a section of the genus where the mesocarp is fibrous rather than fleshy[
1903
Title
A Revision of Cordia Section Gerascanthus (Boraginales; Cordiaceae)
Publication
J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 7(1); 55 - 83. 2013
Author
Miller J.S.
Publisher
 
Year
2013
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Medicinal

None known

Agroforestry Uses:

The flowers are a good source of nectar for bees[
493
Title
Flora of Yucatan
Publication
 
Author
Standley P.C.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Field Museum of Natural History; Chicago
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
The first flora that was attempted for this area in 1930, so it is obviously lacking information and the Botanical names can be out of date. Still, an excellent work and it records many plant uses. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Other Uses

A fibre is obtained from the bark[
454
Title
Useful Fiber Plants of the World
Publication
 
Author
Dodge C.R.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/
Publisher
USDA; Washington.
Year
1897
ISBN
 
Description
A rather dated, but very comprehensive catalogue of fibre plants from around the world. The book can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

The rose-coloured wood is strong and elastic[
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.
,
411
Title
Trees and Shrubs of Mexico
Publication
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol 23
Author
Standley P.C.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution; Washington
Year
1926
ISBN
 
Description
Although dated, it contains a wealth of information on the trees and shrubs of Mexico, including many of their uses. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
493
Title
Flora of Yucatan
Publication
 
Author
Standley P.C.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Field Museum of Natural History; Chicago
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
The first flora that was attempted for this area in 1930, so it is obviously lacking information and the Botanical names can be out of date. Still, an excellent work and it records many plant uses. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].
The heart-wood is of a deep purplish-lilac colour, marked with thin black streaks running with the grain, and having a bright metallic lustre; it is clearly demarcated from the 18 - 50mm wide band of bright yellow sapwood. The wood is dense and hard, fairly sound-hearted, free from cuppy shakes, it stands well, and for some purposes is a good substitute for lignum-vitae[
719
Title
A Manual of the Timbers of the World
Publication
 
Author
Howard A.L.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
MacMillan and Co.; London.
Year
1934
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent and comprehensive book on timbers. Rather dated, but still a main source of information for many of the less known woods. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. The wood is used for construction, making doors, venetian blinds, sweeps of sugar mills, furniture and boats[
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.
,
411
Title
Trees and Shrubs of Mexico
Publication
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol 23
Author
Standley P.C.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution; Washington
Year
1926
ISBN
 
Description
Although dated, it contains a wealth of information on the trees and shrubs of Mexico, including many of their uses. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. It is also useful for tool and knife handles, turnery and walkingsticks, and the butt ends of billiard cues[
719
Title
A Manual of the Timbers of the World
Publication
 
Author
Howard A.L.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
MacMillan and Co.; London.
Year
1934
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent and comprehensive book on timbers. Rather dated, but still a main source of information for many of the less known woods. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Propagation

Seed - very slow to germinate, the process can be sped up if the seed is scarified by lightly abrading the seedcoat to allow easier ingress of water[
307
Title
Tropical and Subtropical Trees - A Worldwide Encyclopaedic Guide.
Publication
 
Author
Barwick. M.
Publisher
Thames & Hudson, London
Year
2004
ISBN
0-500-51181-0
Description
A superb book, very concise and well written, giving a wealth of information on 400 or more species including descriptions, habitat, cultivation details and plant uses. A wealth of colour photographs bring each plant vividly to life.
].
Cuttings.
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2024-02-22. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Cordia+gerascanthus>

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