Skip to main content
This species is accepted, and its native range is Mexico (Veracruz, Oaxaca) to Honduras.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium

GUATEMALA. Alta Verapaz. MEXICO. Veracruz.
Wet forest on the Atlantic slope; 900-1,500 m elevation.
General Description
Habit: solitary, erect or briefly decumbent, 0.3-1 m tall. Stem: 3-7 mm diam., creeping, buried in leaf litter, green, conspicuously ringed, internodes 0.6-1.2 cm long. Leaves: 7-12, erect-ascending to spreading, bifid, forming a rosettelike crown; sheath 5 cm long, very open, tubular only in lower 1/2, closely appressed, oblique apically, margin whitish or light green and longitudinally striate-nerved; petiole to 5 cm long or shorter, lightly grooved and green or gray-green above, rounded and green or gray-green below, lower margins of blades lightly decurrent along petiole to sheath; rachis 12-20 cm long, angled and green above, rounded and gray-green or green below with a pale or whitish band extending to sheath; blades 12-22 x 3.5-7.5 cm, cuneate-obovate or slightly elliptic, not bifid but entire or with a very small notch at otherwise rounded or obtuse apex, closely plicate, ± stiff, cuneate basally, velvety bluish green or mottled green above, paler below, margins toothed and whitish or green, 26-30 teeth per side, these 0.75-1.5 x 0.75-1.5 mm, 13-19 primary nerves on each side of rachis, a secondary nerve between each pair of primaries. Inflorescences: interfoliar, 10-20 cm long, erect-spreading; peduncles 6-10 cm long, slender, light green in flower, orange in fruit; bracts 4-5, slender, thin-papery, longitudinally striate-nerved, brownish in flower, uppermost largest and obliquely split on one side; rachis 2-9 cm long, greenish in flower, orange in fruit. Staminate with 7-16 rachillae, these to 5-6 cm long, 1.5 mm diam., spreading, whitish green. Pistillate spicate or sometimes forked, spreading; rachis or flower-bearing portion 5-6 cm long, ± rounded or slightly angled, 3-4 mm thick and green in flower, thicker and orange in fruit. Flowers: Staminate in loose spirals, 2 x 2.5-3 mm, strongly flattened-depressed-globose, whitish, slightly sunken in superficial elliptic depressions 1-1.5 mm long; calyx 0.75-1 x 1.5-2.5 mm, lobed, very light green to yellowish, membranous, brown-margined, sepals connate in basal 2/3, acute to rounded apically; petals 2 x 2 mm, strongly cupped, bilobed, connate basally, free apically, thick, fleshy; stamens 1.5 mm high, paired, one in each of 2 petal lobes, filaments 0.5 mm long, connate and adnate basally to pistillode, white to yellow-white, anthers 0.5 mm long, yellow; pistillode 1.5-2 x 1.5 mm high, pear-shaped, 3-lobed apically, whitish. Pistillate in moderate spirals, 1.75-2 x 3.5 mm, strongly flattened- depressed-globose, white, sunken in elliptic to rounded depressions 1-1.5 mm long; calyx 0.75-1.5 x 2.5 mm, deeply lobed, green to yellowish, brown-margined, sepals connate in basal 1/3, broadly rounded apically; petals 2 x 2 mm, connate and/or imbricate basally, imbricate or valvate nearly to apex where briefly free, corolla opening by a ± triangular opening, cup-shaped, slightly erect apically, thick, fleshy; pistil 1.25-1.5 x 1.5 mm, ± globose, light yellowish or white, styles short, stigma lobes separated, angled, elevated, strongly recurved. Fruits: 8.5-12 x 6-8.5 mm, ovoid to ellipsoid, black, occasionally with perianth adherent, epicarp thin, mesocarp slightly fleshy, mucilaginous, green, aromatic, endocarp membranous, nerved; seeds 7-9 x 4.5 mm, ovoid, brownish-red.

Native to:

Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Southwest

Chamaedorea tuerckheimii (Dammer) Burret appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Jan 1, 1992 von Türckheim, H. [8603], Guatemala K000462926 isotype

First published in Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 11: 766 (1933)

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.
  • Nelson Sutherland, C.H. (2008). Catálogo de las plantes vasculares de Honduras. Espermatofitas: 1-1576. SERNA/Guaymuras, Tegucigalpa, Honduras.


Palmweb - Palms of the World Online

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

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew

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
Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License