Monographs Details: Symphonia
Authority: Maguire, Bassett & Wurdack, John J. 1964. The botany of the Guayana Highland--Part V. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 10: 1-278.
Scientific Name:Symphonia L.f.

Moronobea Aubl., PI. Guiane 778, in part. 1755.

Type species. Symphonia globulifera L. f.

Perrier (Flore de Madagascar, Fam. 136. pps. 13-31. 1951) accounts for sixteen species in the flora of Madagascar, including the African S. globulifera. Chief morphologic differences and criteria upon which the sixteen taxa are distinguished are (1) size and form of leaf, (2) incidence of anthers per phalange, (3) size of flower and arrangement of inflorescence. Although there is insufficient material from Madagascar in American herbaria upon which to form judgment, it does seem, from M. Perrier's account, that differentiation of Madagascar elements of the genus m a y have proceeded more actively than that of the American congener, and in Madagascar may well indeed have developed a number of consistently and discretely established species. This development does not seem to have obtained in America.

It is true that Symphonia globulifera in the Neotropics is a plastic and variable species, and that leaf form, flower size, and inflorescence size extend through considerable metric range. Differences in size or texture of the leaves are insensibly confluent and extreme, and do not seem to be correlatable with any geographic or ecologic segregation or isolation, but rather flow generally throughout the entire population.

For these reasons no infrageneric or infraspecific taxa are herein recognized at this time.