Monographs Details: Pseudosamanea
Authors:Rupert C. Barneby
Authority: Barneby, Rupert C. & Grimes, James W. 1996. Silk tree, guanacaste, monkey's earring: a generic system for the synandrous Mimosaceae of the Americas. Part I. Abarema, Albizia, and allies. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 74: 1-292.
Scientific Name:Pseudosamanea


Pseudosamanea Harms, Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin- Dahlem 11: 54. 1930. — Sp. typica (unica): Ps. guachapele (Kunth) Harms = Albizzia guachapele (Kunth) Dugand.

Macrophyllidious deciduous trees, the inflorescence composed of umbelliform capitula axillary to coeval lvs, the meristem continuous beyond them. Stipules lanceolate caducous. Lf-formula iii-vi/5-8, the longer lfts 2.3-5 cm; lft-venation pinnate. Fls dimorphic, the peripheral ones slenderly pedicellate, the terminal one sessile, much larger. Pods sessile or shortly stipitate, in profile broad-linear piano-compressed, nearly straight, ±12-22 x 2-4.5 cm, either dehiscent through ventral suture or subindehiscent; seeds transverse on subfiliform funicle, the crustaceous testa buff or ivory-white, the pleurogram U-shaped or complete. — Spp. 2, one continental, widespread from SE Mexico to NE Peru, centr. Venezuela, and in cultivation, the other endemic to Cuba.

The two species of Pseudosamanea resemble some paleotropical members of Albizia that are planted or naturalized in the Americas, but are distinguished by essentially pinnate, not palmate-pinnate leaflet- venation, and by organization of the inflorescence, the units of which arise directly from lf-axils and do not form a terminal panicle of pseudoracemose capitula. At anthesis the pseudosamaneas may easily be mistaken, and Ps. guachapele often has been, with Samanea saman. Where sympatric, this pair may be separated, in absence of characteristic fruits or where the inflorescence architecture is not readily apparent, by length of peripheral pedicels, 11-22 mm long in Ps. guachapele and <5 mm long in S. saman. Genuine albizias that occur in the range of Ps. guachapele have either many more and smaller leaflets, or sessile peripheral flowers, or an inflorescence of efoliate pseudoracemose panicles and smaller flowers, or incipiently segmented pods, or some combination of those features.

Cassens and Miller (1981) stated that the wood of Pseudosamanea can be told from other woods with nonseptate rays and nonconfluent parenchyma on the basis of its mostly uniseriate rays and the size of the intervascular pits.