Chelyocarpus repens F.Kahn & K.Mejia
  • Principes 32: 69 (1988) 

Notes: Distribution: Peru (Loreto)

General Description

Trunk pale-brown, procumbent, up to 1 m long and 6-8 cm diam., sometimes erect, up to 0.6 m high. Roots produced at the lower side along the trunk, with secondary, white, short, spiny roots. Leaves 10-20; sheath 0.25-0.3 m long, densely pale-brown appressed villous; petiole up to 1.8 m long, biconvex and rhombic in section with obtuse margins distally, furfuraceous lepidote on the lower side; hastula deltoid, up to 1.5 cm high 1 cm wide; blade green above, white below, lower surface covered with a continuous layer of thin, white, membranaceous scales, these rubbing off on contact, 0.75 m high 1.2 m wide, divided to within 1.5 cm of the base, laterally divided into 4-6 elongatecuneate many-ribbed segments, to 0.75 m long and 0.2 m wide, the external often acute, each many-ribbed segment divided into 2-7 acute I-ribbed segments, 2-8 cm long and 1.5-4 cm wide, these with the midrib prominent below with up to 3 lateral nerves and several finer tertiary nerves on each side. Inflorescence erect, 1 or 2, rarely more, among petiole bases, ca. 0.35 m long, branching to 1 or 2 orders; peduncle 0.24-0.28 m long, strongly flattened, palebrown appressed villous, turning glabrate, bearing a prophyll at 0.18-0.20 m from the base, pale-brown tomentose then glabrate, 9-11 cm long, and a peduncular bract at 0.22-0.28 m from the base, whitish floccose tomentose at anthesis, 5-7 cm long; rachis flattened, 5-8 cm long, 1-2.5 cm wide at base, with 25-35 first order branches, to 0.5 cm long, strongly flattened and wider next to the rachis, each subtended by a slender, flattened, tomentose bract, up to 1.8 cm long; rachillae up to 2 cm long, adnate to the first order branch, densely covered by flowers. Some flowers borne on rachis and branches. Flowers strongly scented, creamy turning dark brown when dry, sessile, 4 mm high, with a slender bract, 2.5 mm long; perianth uniseriate, 2.5 mm high, often irregularly 6-lobed, each lobe irregularly denticulate; stamens 4-8, usually 6, filaments broad and thick basally, tapered to the exserted anthers, often connate basally or throughout; carpels 1-6, most frequently 3, ca. 1.5 mm high; style short, recurved; stigma papillate; perianth in fruit 2.5 mm high. Fruit greenish, globose, 2.5 cm high; epicarp rather smooth, not tessellate, mesocarp whitish, thin. Seed depressed globose to globose, ca. 1.8 cm high; embryo in the lower third. Only one carpel giving fruit, rarely two, then fruits connate basally.

Diagnostic Description

Caulis procumbens ad 1 m longus, foliis 10-20. Lamina 0.7 m longa, 1.2 m lata, bipartita, laterilater in 4-6 segmenta elongato- cuneata partita, supra viridis, subtus alba. Inflorescentia erecta, 0.35 m longa, bracteis sterilibus 2; rhachis 5-8 cm longa ad apicem compressa; rami 2 cm longi. Flores 4 mm alti; perianthium uniseriatum plerumque 6•lobatum, 2.5 mm altum; stamina 4-8 plerumque 6; carpella 3-5 raro 1, 2, 6. Fructus globosus, 2.5 cm diametro, epicarpio laevi. Embryo subter dimidium.


"In the type locality, this understory palm occurs in high density on slopes (206 palms, among them 18 seedlings, were counted on 0.62 ha) in "terra


Type locality is near Jenaro Herrera village (4°55'S; 73°40'W) in the lower Ucayali River basin, Loreto, Peru. This species was also collected in Yaguasyacu River (20 40'S; 72°00'W), tributary of Ampiyacu River (Plowman et al., no. 6772), Loreto, Peru.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
Found in
  • Southern America Western South America Peru


  • 1 Govaerts, R. & Dransfield, J. (2005). World Checklist of Palms: 1-223. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • 2 Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. Continental Publishing, Deurne.
  • 3 F. Kahn, A New Species of Chelyocarpus (Palmae, Coryphoideae) From Peruvian Amazonia. 1988

 Information From

Palmweb - Palms of the World Online
Palmweb 2011. Palmweb: Palms of the World Online. Published on the internet Accessed on 21/04/2013
  • A Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
eMonocot. (2010, 1st November). Retrieved Wednesday, 8th February, 2012, from
  • B Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
  • C See You may use data on these Terms and Conditions and on further condition that: The data is not used for commercial purposes; You may copy and retain data solely for scholarly, educational or research purposes; You may not publish our data, except for small extracts provided for illustrative purposes and duly acknowledged; You acknowledge the source of the data by the words "With the permission of the Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew" in a position which is reasonably prominent in view of your use of the data; Any other use of data or any other content from this website may only be made with our prior written agreement.