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This species is accepted, and its native range is Panama.

Dense, wet forest and cloud forest at or near the Continental Divide; 800-1,000 m elevation.
General Description
Habit: cespitose, often branching up to I m up stem, decumbent, to 1.5 m tall, forming clumps 1-2 m across. Stem: 5-10 mm diam., rooting and sprouting at nodes, sprawling and twisting along ground and through adjacent vegetation, smooth, green, prominently ringed, internodes 5-10 cm long. Leaves: 4-5, erect-spreading, pinnate or rarely bifid; sheath to 20 cm long, tubular, obliquely open apically, green, longitudinally striated; petiole to 20 cm long, flat and green above, rounded and pale below; rachis to 25 cm long, angled and green above, rounded and with a pale yellow or light green band below extending onto sheath; pinnae 2-5 on each side of rachis, all but apical pair 12-18 x 2.5-4 cm, lanceolate, sigmoid, acuminate, narrowed basally, 4-5 prominent primary nerves above, I secondary between each pair of primaries, tertiaries numerous, faint, apical pair of pinnae (or if bifid) 27-30 x 8-12 cm, slightly sigmoid, acuminate, 9-12 prominent nerves above, these 1-2 cm apart, all pinnae ± thick, glossy green. Inflorescences: inter- or infrafoliar, often emerging from persistent sheaths, erect; peduncles 15-25 cm long, 5-10 mm wide at base and there flattened, 1.8-3 mm diam. at apex and there ± rounded, pale to green in flower; bracts 4-5, prophyll 2 cm long, 2nd bract 8 cm, 3rd 12 cm, 4th 15 cm and exceeding peduncle, 5th 4 cm and sometimes concealed by the larger 4th, long-lanceolate, obliquely open apically, finely longitudinally striate- nerved, papery, greenish to brown in flower, lower ones acute, upper ones acute-acuminate; rachises to 3 cm long, greenish in flower. Staminate with 6-10 rachillae, these to 10 cm long, slightly drooping. Pistillate with 10 rachillae, these to 15 cm long, erect-spreading, greenish in flower. Flowers: Staminate in ± dense spirals, 1-2 mm apart, 2-2.5 x 1.8-2.5 mm, ± globose, greenish yellow in flower, drying brownish, only slightly sunken in superficial elliptic depressions 3 x 1.5 mm; calyx 0.8-1 x 1.8-2 mm, deeply lobed, only lightly nerved, sepals connate only briefly at base, rounded to acute apically; petals 2.5 x 2 mm, valvate, connate apically and basally and adnate apically to pistillode and corolla opening by basal and lateral apertures, acute, ± thin, lightly longitudinally striatenerved; stamens 1.25-2 mm high, anthers 2 mm long, sessile or nearly so, longitudinally bilobed; pistillode 2-2.5 mm high, columnar, very slender, slightly flared apically. Pistillate in dense spirals, 1-1.25 x 2 mm, subconic, nearly shieldlike, yellowish, sunken in elliptic to rounded depressions 2 mm long; calyx 0.75-1 x 2 mm, lobed, nerved when dry, sepals imbricate in basal 1/2, truncate to broadly rounded apically; petals 1.5 x 1.5 mm, imbricate nearly to apex, straight or acute; pistil 1 x 1 mm, depressed-ovoid to globose, styles short or lacking, stigma lobes recurved, short, not exceeding petals. Fruits: not known
PANAMA. Cocle. Panama.

Native to:


Chamaedorea serpens Hodel appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Principes 35: 77 (1991)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. & Dransfield, J. (2005). World Checklist of Palms: 1-223. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. MIM, Deurne.

Not accepted by

  • Lorenzi, H., Noblick, L.R., Kahn, F. & Ferreira, E. (2010). Brazilian Flora Arecaceae (Palms): 1-268. Instituto Plantarum de Estudos da Flora LTDA, São Paulo, Brazil. [Cited as Chamaedorea pinnatifrons.]


Palmweb - Palms of the World Online

  • Hodel, D. 1992. Chamaedorea Palms, The Species and Their Cultivation. The International Palm Society.

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Palmweb - Palms of the World Online
Palmweb 2011. Palmweb: Palms of the World Online. Published on the internet Accessed on 21/04/2013
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