Ximenia americana L. var. americana

  • Authority

    Sleumer, Hermann O. 1984. Olacaceae. Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 38: 1-159. (Published by NYBG Press)

  • Family


  • Scientific Name

    Ximenia americana L. var. americana

  • Type

    Type. Hort. Cliffort. 483 (lectotype, BM, cf. Lucas, 1968, p. 5).

  • Description

    Variety Description - Glabrous sprawling or low-branching shrub or several-stemmed tree, to 12 m tall; bark reddish to grayish-brownish. Branches more or less flexuous, dark. Branchlets with axillary spines, or usually ending in robust thorns to 7 cm long, covered with roundish lenticels and reddish cork. Leaves often closely arranged on short lateral twigs, usually deciduous in the dry season or maybe flowering time, variable in shape, size, and texture, narrowly to broadly lanceolate, ovate, elliptic, obovate, or sometimes (sub)orbiculate, generally obtuse at both ends, though apex often minutely apiculate or mucronulate (to 1 mm long) and sometimes emarginate, membranaceous to (sub)coriaceous, entire, dark to yellowish-green when fresh, turning brownish-blackish and becoming brittle in drying, glabrous or rarely short-pubescent in the petiolar canal, (2-)2.5-5(-8, -10) x (l-)2-3(-4, -6) cm, lateral nerves 3-5(-7) pairs, inconspicuous; petiole 3-7(-10, -12) mm long. Inflorescence axillary or near the end of short lateral branchlets (brachy-blasts) in form of 2-8(-10)-flowered subumbellate racemes or cymes; peduncles 1-15 mm long; pedicels (3-)4-7(-12) mm long, with 1 basal bract or ebracteolate. Flowers functionally bisexual. Sepals 4(-5), subacute, ciliate, rarely puberulent within, 0.5-1.5 mm long. Petals 4(-5), linear-oblong, acute or rather obtuse, finally recurved for ca. ½ their length, white to yellowish-green, sometimes purple-tipped, fragrant, white-bearded inside to within 1.5-3 mm of apex. Stamens 8(-10); filaments sigmoid at apex, 2.5-4 mm long; anthers 2-4 mm long. Ovary lanceoloid, 2.4-3.5 mm long; style filiform, (1-)2.5-5.5 mm long. Drupe plum-like, ellipsoid to subglobose, apiculate, yellow to orange, rarely scarlet, (1.7-)2.5(-3.5) cm long, 1.5-3 cm diam., subtended by not-accrescent calyx or sepals; pericarp (sarcocarp) pulpy, green to yellowish; endocarp crustaceous; seed 1, white, 1.5-2.5 x 1-1.2 cm.

  • Discussion

    Local names and uses. The wood is hard, heavy, close-grained, and used as a substitute for sandalwood because of its fragrance and whitish-yellowish to brownish color, but seldom large enough for furniture. The bark is astringent. The sour pulp of the fruit is edible. The nuts are purgative and are reported to contain hydrocyanic acid.

    Ximenia americana is accepted as the basic species which comprises numerous local forms of doubtful taxonomic significance. Variety argentinensis DeFilipps has leaves glaucous beneath and is found in the southern part of the neotropical area of X. americana. Variety microphylla Welwitsch ex Oliver is limited to subequatorial Africa.

    Parasitism. Root-hemiparasitism of X. americana var. americana (Heckel, 1899, 1900; Barber, 1907; DeFilipps, 1969) is known to be host non-specific; also autoparasitism and even the formation of haustoria attached to non-living objects occur.

    Distribution and Ecology: Pantropical and -subtropical. From Florida, the Keys and West Indies to C and S America; southern limit from S Brazil to C Argentina (Rio Colorado). In thickets behind beaches along seashores, but also inland in dry savanna scrub or forest, sometimes even in light rain forest, scattered, on calcareous or sandy ground, from sea level to ca. 1200 m alt. Dispersal: The succulent pericarp is eaten by various animals. The kernel is light enough to float, and there is, in addition, a layer of air-bearing tissue beneath the hard endocarp which allows the fruit to be water-borne for months (DeFilipps, 1976).

  • Common Names

    albaricoque, ameixa, Ciruelillo, limoncillo, manzanilla, jía manzanilla, pepenance

  • Distribution

    Mexico North America| Campeche Mexico North America| Chiapas Mexico North America| Guerrero Mexico North America| Jalisco Mexico North America| Nayarit Mexico North America| Oaxaca Mexico North America| Tabasco Mexico North America| Veracruz Mexico North America| Yucatán Mexico North America| Guatemala Central America| Baja Verapaz Guatemala Central America| Chiquimula Guatemala Central America| El Progreso Guatemala Central America| Escuintla Guatemala Central America| Huehuetenango Guatemala Central America| Izabal Guatemala Central America| Jalapa Guatemala Central America| Petén Guatemala Central America| Sacatepéquez Guatemala Central America| San Marcos Guatemala Central America| Belize Central America| Corozal Belize Central America| Stann Creek Belize Central America| Toledo Belize Central America| Honduras Central America| Atlántida Honduras Central America| Colón Honduras Central America| Comayagua Honduras Central America| Copán Honduras Central America| Cortés Honduras Central America| El Paraíso Honduras Central America| Francisco Morazán Honduras Central America| Intibucá Honduras Central America| La Paz Honduras Central America| Olancho Honduras Central America| Valle Honduras Central America| El Salvador Central America| La Paz El Salvador Central America| La Unión El Salvador Central America| San Salvador El Salvador Central America| San Vicente El Salvador Central America| Santa Ana El Salvador Central America| Nicaragua Central America| Chontales Nicaragua Central America| Managua Nicaragua Central America| Masaya Nicaragua Central America| Costa Rica South America| Guanacaste Costa Rica Central America| Puntarenas Costa Rica Central America| Panama Central America| Bocas del Toro Panamá Central America| Canal Zone Panamá Central America| Chiriquí Panamá Central America| Colón Panama Central America| Darién Panamá Central America| Herrera Panama Central America| Los Santos Panama Central America| Panamá Panama Central America| Veraguas Panama Central America| Bahamas South America| South Andros Bahamas South America| Turks and Caicos Islands South America| Cat Island Bahamas South America| Long Island Bahamas South America| New Providence Bahamas South America| Cuba South America| Camagüey Cuba South America| La Habana Cuba South America| Villa Clara Cuba South America| Piñar del Río Cuba South America| Cayman Islands South America| Jamaica South America| Haiti South America| Dominican Republic South America| Puerto Rico South America| Virgin Islands South America| Saint Thomas Virgin Islands of the United States South America| Saint Vincent and the Grenadines South America| Anguilla South America| Martinique South America| Bonaire South America| Colombia South America| Antioquia Colombia South America| Atlántico Colombia South America| Bolívar Colombia South America| Chocó Colombia South America| Cundinamarca Colombia South America| Magdalena Colombia South America| Tolima Colombia South America| Venezuela South America| Anzoátegui Venezuela South America| Aragua Venezuela South America| Bolívar Venezuela South America| Carabobo Venezuela South America| Distrito Federal Venezuela South America| Falcón Venezuela South America| Lara Venezuela South America| Miranda Venezuela South America| Nueva Esparta Venezuela South America| Sucre Venezuela South America| Trinidad and Tobago South America| Guyana South America| Suriname South America| French Guiana South America| Brazil South America| Bahia Brazil South America| Ceará Brazil South America| Distrito Federal Brazil South America| Espirito Santo Brazil South America| Goiás Brazil South America| Maranhão Brazil South America| Mato Grosso Brazil South America| Minas Gerais Brazil South America| Pará Brazil South America| Paraná Brazil South America| Pernambuco Brazil South America| Piauí Brazil South America| Rio de Janeiro Brazil South America| Rio Grande do Norte Brazil South America| Rondônia Brazil South America| Santa Catarina Brazil South America| São Paulo Brazil South America| Bolivia South America| Beni Bolivia South America| La Paz Bolivia South America| Santa Cruz Bolivia South America| Argentina South America|