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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 12/19/2012)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 12/19/2012)
Species PSIDIUM GUAJAVA L.
PlaceOfPublication Sp. Pl. 470. 1753.
Synonym Psidium pomiferum L. loc. cit. 672. 1762. Psidium pyriferum L. loc. cit. 1762.
Description Shrubs or small trees with peculiar pale brown bark that scales off in thin sheets; young twigs 4-angular, pubescent. Leaves elliptical to oblong, rounded, obtuse or apiculate at the apex, rounded or obtuse at the base, 4-12 cm. long and 3.5-4.5 cm. broad, chartaceous, glabrescent on both sides, the midrib impressed above and prominent beneath, the lateral nerves 12-16 on each side, impressed above and prominent beneath, parallel and arcuate-anastomosing near the margin; petiole 3-4 mm. long. Peduncles axillary, 1- to 3-flowered, pubescent. Flower buds pubescent, constricted under the calyx, 1.0-1.5 cm. long. Calyx closed in the bud, ellipsoid, irregularly 4- to 5-fid at anthesis, its segments about 1 cm. long, sericeous inside. Petals 1.5-2.0 cm. long. Anthers linear-oblong. Ovary 3- to 5-celled; placenta 2-lamellate; ovules in a triple row at each side of the placenta, turned in all direc- tions. Berry pear-shaped or globose, 3-6 cm. in diameter, glabrate.
Habit Shrubs or small trees
Distribution Cultivated throughout the tropics.
Specimen BOCAS DEL TORO: Isla Colon, Von Wedel 2948; Water Valley, Von XVedel 821. CANAL ZONE: Chagres, Fendler 306; in government forest along Las Cruces Trail, Hunter d Allen 71; Barro Colorado Island, Wilson I7, Woodworth & Vestal 393, Wetmore d Abbe I49; Ancon, Pittier 2725. CHIRIQUI: Llanos del Volcain, Allen 1536. COCLE: hills south of El Valle de Anton, Allen 2524 (in part: mixed with Ps. guineense); Penonome and vicinity, Williams 237. PANAMA': Juan Diaz region, near Tapia R., Maxon dJ Harvey 6738.
Note The common guava, native in tropical America and cultivated throughout the tropics of the world, is abundant in pastures and rather dry thickets. On the Pacific slope of Central America it often forms extensive thickets of characteristic appearance known as guayabales. The wood is brownish or reddish gray, hard, strong, elastic, close-grained and durable, but the trees are too small to be of much use. The Spanish name for the fruit is guayaba, and for the tree guayabo. The fruit varies greatly in size, shape, color and flavor, and has a musky odor that is remarkably penetrating. Raw it is somewhat insipid, but it makes an excellent jelly and is prepared in other ways. In general the fruit is little esteemed in Central America, but slices of the stiff, dark colored jelly are a frequent dessert dish.
Common guava
 
 
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