Gevuina avellana Molina

  • Authority

    Prance, Ghillean T., et al. 2007. Proteaceae. Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 100: 1-218. (Published by NYBG Press)

  • Family


  • Scientific Name

    Gevuina avellana Molina

  • Synonyms

    Quadria avellana (Molina) C.F.Gaertn., Guevina avellana Molina, Quadria heterophylla Ruiz & Pav.

  • Description

    Species Description - Tree, or shrub, to 15 m tall, multistemmed, branching from the base; twigs shallowly ridged longitudinally. Adult leaves dark green, shiny, coriaceous with young leaves thick chartaceous, 6-23 cm long; 2-6 pairs of lateral leaflets, with petiolule 6(-8) mm long to leaflets subsessile; terminal leaflet 1.5-5.5 × l.5-5 cm, widely ovate to very widely ovate, the base subcordate to truncate to decurrent, ± symmetrical to asymmetrical, the apex usually obtuse to acute, occasionally retuse to truncate or short acuminate; lateral leaflet l-6(-8) × 1-5 cm, narrowly ovate to ovate to ± triangular (occasionally widely ovate to very widely ovate), the base cordate to truncate to cuneate to decurrent, the apex acute, occasionally obtuse; margins of leaflets serrate; young leaves rusty-brown pubescent, densely so on rhachis and primary veins, sparsely on lamina, particularly the upper surface; older leaves becoming glabrous; venation highly irregular, the reticulation from weak to strong (easily visible by eye), the pattern craspedodromous to camptodromous to brochidodromous to cladodromous; strong secondary veins, 2-6 pairs. Inflorescence 515 cm long; flowers white to yellowish-white to greenish-white; peduncle 1-5 mm long (increasing in length as the flower matures); bracteoles 1-2(-3) mm long; mature buds laterally swollen at apex; straight perianth segment 10-12.5 mm long, the reflexed perianth segments 9-11 mm long, ca. 1 mm shorter than the erect segment in individual flowers; gynoecium 912 mm; stigma and style 6-8 mm; anthers narrowly oblong, 1-1.5 × 0.3-0.5 mm, drying orange when mature. Fruit ± spherical to ellipsoid with a small point at the tip, 15-28 × 13-18 mm (measurements for dried specimens), green, ripening through red to black, some forms yellow when ripe; surface of dried fruit finely and irregularly longitudinally fissured. Chromosome number 2n = 26 (Johnson & Briggs, 1975).

  • Discussion

    Grown in parks and gardens. Wood is light, flexible, and easy to work; used in cabinet and musical instrument making, and for boats and oars (Mexia 8017, probably referring to the Araucarians’ uses). The high oil content of the fruit (50%) means that Gevuina has the potential for use in the food and cosmetic industries. There are a wide variety of possible uses in food, e.g. in sweets, pastries, cakes, flour, and ice cream. Extraction of the oil leaves a residue that contains essential amino acids, which if converted to human food would be particularly useful in complementing diets of cereals and legumes. The possibility of using the oil in cosmetics is good because of its high concentration and its capacity to filter UV rays, opening possibilities for use in products used to protect skin from the sun. In 1997, 5.7 tons of Chilean hazelnut were exported for a value of US $92,000 (Campos Roasio, 1998).

    We have been unable to locate a Molina type for this species at Bologna, and hence have chosen a neotype.

    Phenology. Flowering and fruiting apparently concentrated in Jan-Mar, but fertile specimens have been collected year-round.

  • Common Names

    avellano, guevin

  • Distribution

    Often an understory tree, growing in various conditions of soil and light, and on mountainsides to 600 m. Capable of rapid growth, particularly in areas that have been felled or burnt. Primarily a Chilean species, extending into the Argentinian province of Chubut (Boelcke, 1981), from where we have seen one specimen.

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