1. Family: Fabaceae Lindl.
    1. Genus: Cojoba Britton & Rose
      1. Cojoba graciliflora (S.F.Blake) Britton & Rose

        A member of the pea and bean family (Leguminosae/Fabaceae), Cojoba graciliflora is an attractive tree with bright green, highly divided leaves. The beautiful, pompom-shaped inflorescences and red seed pods make this plant a handsome ornamental. It occasionally loses its leaves during the dry season in the wild.

    [KSP]

    Kew Species Profiles

    General Description
    Guadeloupe blackbead has beautiful clusters of creamy-white flowers and stunning red pods shaped like a string of beads and containing black seeds.

    A member of the pea and bean family (Leguminosae/Fabaceae), Cojoba graciliflora is an attractive tree with bright green, highly divided leaves. The beautiful, pompom-shaped inflorescences and red seed pods make this plant a handsome ornamental. It occasionally loses its leaves during the dry season in the wild.

    The specific epithet graciliflora refers to the graceful appearance of the leaves.

    Species Profile

    Geography and distribution

    Guadeloupe blackbead is native to central and southern Mexico and Central America.

    Description

    Overview: A tree growing up to 15 m tall, with a trunk up to 15 cm in diameter. Young twigs have bark with distinct lenticels (holes allowing gas exchange) and chocolate-brown hairs covering the new (resting) buds.

    Leaves: Dark green, glossy, bipinnate (divided into pinnae that are themselves divided again into leaflets), usually with 2−5 pairs of pinnae, with 7−18 pairs of recurved leaflets at the tip.

    Flowers: Borne in pompom-like clusters of 44–54 flowers on a single stalk (peduncle) 30–76 mm long. Individual flowers are whitish and bear both male and female parts. Stamens (male organs) are fused into a tube for most of their length, with delicate, cream-coloured anthers (pollen-bearing parts) up to 15 mm long and less than a millimetre in diameter. Stigmas (female parts) are cream-coloured.

    Fruits & seeds:The striking, red pods are shaped like a string of beads, being narrowly constricted between the seeds. The seeds can germinate within the fruit whilst it is still hanging on the tree. This is known as viviparous germination. The seeds have a thin seed coat and cannot tolerate desiccation.

    Uses

    Guadeloupe blackbead is cultivated as an ornamental for its attractive clusters of flowers and striking, red fruits. It is also used for medicinal purposes in Belize, where the bark is used in a preparation to treat skin sores.

    Cultivation

    Specimens of Cojoba graciliflora at Kew are given a thick mulch of manure every two years and propagated from semi-ripe stem cuttings in late spring. In the summer, after spraying with water, the foliage of the plant produces an unpleasant smell, similar to that produced by the roots when re-potting the seedlings.

    This species at Kew

    Cojoba graciliflora can be seen growing in Kew’s Princess of Wales Conservatory. One of the resident water dragons can often be seen on one of the inclined branches, which seems to be its favourite resting place.

    Pressed and dried specimens of Cojoba graciliflora are held in Kew’s Herbarium, where they are available to researchers from around the world, by appointment. The details of some of these can be seen online in Kew’s Herbarium Catalogue.

    Distribution
    Mexico
    Ecology
    Forested riversides, tropical semi-evergreen forests on sandy loam soils.
    Conservation
    Not evaluated according to IUCN Red List criteria.
    Hazards

    None known.

    [KSP]
    Use
    Ornamental; medicine.

    Images

    Distribution

    Found In:

    Belize, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Nicaragua

    Common Names

    English
    Guadeloupe blackbead

    Cojoba graciliflora (S.F.Blake) Britton & Rose appears in other Kew resources:

    First published in N. Amer. Fl. 23: 31 (1928)

    Accepted in:

    • [2] (2016) Revista Mexicana de Biodiversidad
    • [3] Garcia-Mendoza, A.J. & Meave, J.A. (eds.) (2012) Diversidad florística de Oaxaca: de musgos a angiospermas (colecciones y listas de especies) , ed. 2: 1-351. Instituto de Biología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.
    • [7] Nelson Sutherland, C.H. (2008) Catálogo de las plantes vasculares de Honduras. Espermatofitas . SERNA/Guaymuras, Tegucigalpa, Honduras.
    • [10] (2001) Monographs in Systematic Botany from the Missouri Botanical Garden 85: i-xlii, 1-2666. Missouri Botanical Garden.
    • [11] Balick, M.J., Nee, M.H. & Atha, D.E. (2000) Checklist of the Vascular Plants of Belize with Common Names an Uses . New Yourk Botanic Garden Press, New York.
    • [13] Govaerts, R. (1999) World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. MIM, Deurne.
    • [15] (1946) Fieldiana Botany New Series 24(5): 1-502. Field Museum of Natural History.

    Literature

    • [1] (2016) Revista Mexicana de Biodiversidad
    • [4] Garcia-Mendoza, A.J. & Meave, J.A. (eds.) (2012) Diversidad florística de Oaxaca: de musgos a angiospermas (colecciones y listas de especies) , ed. 2: 1-351. Instituto de Biología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.
    • [5] (2009) Englera 29-1: 1-438
    • [6] Mabberley, D. J. (2008). Mabberley’s Plant-book: a Portable Dictionary of Plants, their Classification and Uses, 3rd Edition. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

      Rico Arce, L. (2001). Mimosaceae. In: Flora of Nicaragua, eds W. D. Stevens, C. Ulloa, A. Pool & O. M. Montiel. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis.
    • [8] Lewis, G., Schrire, B., Mackinder, B. & Lock, M. (eds) (2005). Legumes of the World. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • [9] (2001) Monographs in Systematic Botany from the Missouri Botanical Garden 85: i-xlii, 1-2666. Missouri Botanical Garden.
    • [12] Balick, M.J., Nee, M.H. & Atha, D.E. (2000) Checklist of the Vascular Plants of Belize with Common Names an Uses . New Yourk Botanic Garden Press, New York.
    • [14] Barneby, R. C. & Grimes, J. W. (1997). Silk Tree, Guanacaste, Monkey’s Earring: a Generic System for the Synandrous Mimosaceae of the Americas, Part 2, Pithecellobium, Cojoba and Zygia. The New York Botanical Garden Press, New York.

    Sources

    International Plant Names Index
    The International Plant Names Index (2016). Published on the Internet http://www.ipni.org
    [A] © Copyright 2016 International Plant Names Index. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Species Profiles
    Kew Species Profiles
    [B] http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
    [C]

    World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
    World Checklist of Selected Plant Families(2016). Published on the Internet http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    [D] See http://kew.org/about-kew/website-information/legal-notices/index.htm 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. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
    [E] © Copyright 2016 International Plant Names Index and World Checkist of Selected Plant Families. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0