Acrocomia aculeata


Family: it belongs to the Arecaceae/Palmae or Palm family, which includes the Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera) and Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera)

Description: A very hardy, tall, spined, solitary palm, up to 15 m tall (50 ft); trunk ringed, grey brown,  9-11" in diameter, armed with large quantity of black spines 3-4" long , particularly towards upper part of tree; leaves pinnately compound, plume-like, very long, up to 10 feet, covered with grayish bloom; both leaves and petioles also possess long needle-like black spines; flowers born on spiny, woody spath covered with spines; flowers unisexual, yellow, with both sexes on the same stalk; male flowers have 6 stamens; fruit is round, light yellowish green, up to 5 cm diameter (2 in), with easily cracked shell and sweet, whitish pulp, often eaten by children; nut inside pulp is protected by extremely hard, bony endocarp, very difficult to crack open.

Natural Habitat: Likes full sun and good drainage; found at lower, drier elevations in St. Vincent; propagation by seed, but seeds take up to 6 months to germinate due to bony endocarp, and plant has very slow early growth.

Origin and Distribution: Native to open forests of Central and South America from Mexico to Argentina.

Government of SVG



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