Monographs Details: Odontocarya asarifolia Barneby
Authority: Mori, S. A. 1987. The Lecythidaceae of a lowland Neotropical Forest: La Fumée mountain, French Guiana. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 44: 1-190.
Family:Menispermaceae
Description:Latin Diagnosis - Inflorescentia [male] racemosa simplici necnon foliorum lamina cordata palmati-nervia O. acuparatae Miers similis, sed floribus majoribus, petalis carnosis, foliorum lamina apice emarginata nec acuminata dorso ad venarum confluxum nectariis 2-4 ellipticis poro apertis instructa necnon endocarpio sicco carne tota exuto distinctissima. Scandens glaberrima, trunco vetustiori ad 1 cm usque diam longitrorsus ruguloso lenticellis subquadratis 1-1.5 mm diam obsito; petiolus gracilis (2.5-) 3.5-7.5 cm longus, basi parum incrassatus; foliorum lamina submembranacea utrinque pallida opaca deltato-cordata 5-9 cm longa et subaequilata, lobis basali-bus late rotundatis (rarissime subangulatis) apice obtusa emarginata, ex ipso basi flabellato palmatim 5-nervia, nervis externis saepissime mox furcatis (sic quasi 7-nervia), nervis superne immersis inferne gracilibus sed prominulis, venatione secundaria cum reticulo aperto fere immersis; confluxus nervorum primariorum nectariis 2-4 ellipticis poro minuto apertis ornatus; inflorescentiae [male] solitariae vel fasciculatae 2-3-nae cum ramulo foliato geminatae e ramo anno-tino erumpentes, simpliciter racemosae (vel pseudoracemosae) ± 10-20-florae, axi 2.5-12 cm longo, floribus plerumque solitariis nunc in nodulo geminatae, bracteis patulis lanceolato-ovatis 1.2-1.7 mm longis; pedicelli graciles 1.5-4.5 mm longi; sepala membranacea, externa 3 ovata subacuta 1.3-1.5 mm longa, 0.7-1 mm lata, interna oblongo-obovata, ±7-nervia, concava, 4-4.5 mm longa, 2.4-3 mm lata; petala 6, 3 paullo majora 2.3-2.6 mm longa, 1.4-1.8 mm lata, omnia ventre sub-concava marginibus minime inflexis, ad medium carnoso-incrassata, apice sub-membranaceo ± cucullato; androecium 6-merum, 2 mm longum, filamentis sub-aequilongis 1.3-1.5 mm longis, ad medium inter se concretis, exterioribus 3 dein patulis interioribus erecto-conniventibus, antherarum thecis erectis prominulis contiguis 0.45-0.6 mm longis longitorsus dehiscentibus; inflorescentiae [female] etiam e ramis annotinis emissae, solitariae vel paucae fasciculatae, racemose 10-20-florae, axi 4-9 cm longo, pedicellis fructiferis patulis ±3.5-5 longis 0.7 mm diam; flos [female] ignotus; drupae ± 9-10 mm longae, 6-7 mm latae endocarpium carne decidua indutum dorso carina verticali acuta cum processibus numerosis acutis truncatisve inter se semotis nec confluentibus ornatum, ventre depressum et (carina excepta) eodem modo ornatum; condyli apertura ovalis aperta ±2 mm longa, 1 mm lata.

Distribution and Ecology - Wooded barrancas and along streams, ±600-1300 m, flowering October to December, in fruit in November and doubtless later, along the eastern piedmont of the Andes from the valley of Río Bermejo in Salta and Formosa S to the headwaters of Río Salado in Tucumán, apparently extending E in Formosa and down to ±150 m along the western edge of the Paraguay valley. ARGENTINA. Salta: Embarcación, departamenti Oran, 800 m, Nov 9, 1938, fr., W. J. Eyerdam & A. A. Beetle 22897 (cotype [female] GH; isotype UC). Tucumán: Cerro del Campo, departamenti Burruyacú, 750 m, fl. [male], Venturi 7676 (A, GH). Formosa: Fontana, Col. T. Meyer 2274 (NY, [female] deflor.).

Discussion:Type. ARGENTINA. Salta: Alemania, departamenti Guachipas, 1300 m, Oct 31, 1929, fl. S. Venturi 9886 (GH). Because it has simply racemose staminate inflorescences combined with cordate glabrous leaves, this easily recognized species has been misidentified, following Diels’s key in Pflanzenreich (1910) as Odontocarya tamoides, a composite species which I have divided in this paper into several. The element in O. tamoides sensu Diels with which O. asarifolia can be compared with profit is O. acuparata, found at about the same latitudes in southeast Brazil. It differs from this in the pallid, blunt-tipped leaf-blades charged on the back, between the veins, with ellipsoid “nectaries” opening by a small pore, by the large staminate flower with carnose petals, and by the sharply verrucose endocarp which sheds the surrounding pulp cleanly and completely at maturity. Nectaries, so-called, of similar form are found in the distantly allopatric Central American O. truncata, but this has acuminate leaf-blades, membranous petals, and a larger endocarp. The glabrous variety of O. tamoides can have flowers as large as those of O. asarifolia (but with petals scarcely thickened) and an endocarp similar in size and sculpturing; but here again the leaf-blade is acuminate and bears on the back, between the main veins, characteristic flat, brownish domatia. The range of O. asarifolia lies south and west of any congener. In Paraguay, where O. tamoides most nearly approaches it, that species is represented by its var. canescens, recognized at a glance by its setulose leaf-blades mucronulate at the triangular tip.