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Useful Tropical Plants

Cordia laevigata

Lam.

Boraginaceae

+ Synonyms

Cordia elliptica Sieber ex Griseb.

Cordia nitida Vahl ex H.West

Gerascanthus laevigatus (Lam.) Borhidi

Hymenesthes nitida (Vahl) Miers

Common Name: Clam Cherry

Cordia laevigata
Tree growing at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Miami, Florida, USA
Photograph by: David Stang
Creative Commons License
Cordia laevigata Cordia laevigata Cordia laevigata

General Information

Cordia laevigata can be a shrub, or a tree with a dense, rounded crown. Usually growing 4 - 8 metres tall, it is reported to sometimes reach 20 metres, whilst at other times it is a shrub only a few metres tall. It can be evergreen or deciduous according to the climate. The bole can be 30cm in diameter[
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
].
The plant is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use of its wood. It makes an attractive ornamental in cultivation[
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
].
Cordia laevigata has quite a wide range in the Caribbean and C. America but its suitable habitat is threatened by urban development, tourism and recreation activities. The extent of this activity has lead to the species being considered locally as 'Critically Endangered' on some of the smaller Caribbean islands, for example, the Cayman Islands. The species is afforded little protection in the wild. Globally, the plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2014)[
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

C. America - Panama; Caribbean - Virgin Islands to Jamaica and Haiti.

Habitat

Thickets and forests in coastal and limestone regions; at elevations up to 500 metres[
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.
,
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
].

Properties

Conservation StatusLeast Concern
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitSemi-deciduous Tree
Height7.00 m
PollinatorsBees
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details



The plant flowers and produces fruit at irregular periods through the year, frequently producing quantities of fruit[
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
].

Edible Uses

Although we have seen no specific information for this species, 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).

Medicinal

None known

Other Uses

The wood is used chiefly for posts[
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
].

The wood of most species in this genus is hard and, where the plants grow large enough, the wood is often harvested at least locally for use in construction etc and also for making charcoal[
1902
Title
Two new species of Cordia L. (Boraginaceae) from Madagascar
Publication
Adansonia series 3, 23(2), 289-295, 2001
Author
Miller J.S.
Publisher
 
Year
2001
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Propagation

Seed -
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2024-06-14. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Cordia+laevigata>

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