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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 5/13/2013)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 5/13/2013)
Species Vitex cooperi Standl.
PlaceOfPublication Publ. Field Columbian Mus., Bot. Ser. 4: 256. 1929.
Description Tree to 26 m tall; trunk buttressed and fluted, to 75 cm d.b.h.; wood durable; bark thin; branchlets acutely tetragonal varying to terete or compressed, grayish or brunneous, glabrescent densely fulvous puberulent when young. Leaves 3-folio- late; leaflets unequal in size, the lateral pair much smaller, thin-chartaceous or submembranous, the central leaflet broadly elliptic, 4.5-22 cm long and 2.5-10.5 cm wide, entire, apically rounded and short-acuminate or abruptly acuminate, the tip obtuse and apiculate, basally acute to acuminate, dark- or bright-green above, lighter beneath, shiny, glabrous above, finely puberulent beneath when young, especially on the larger venation, glabrescent, the lateral leaflets similar but smaller and narrower, petioles 1.3-9.5 cm long, finely appressed-puberulent, petio- lules 1-8 mm long, the central one longest, stout, finely puberulent, flattened, and decidedly margined. Inflorescences axillary, solitary, cymose, blooming after the leaves have matured, 3.5-14 cm long and 4-6 cm wide, ca. 4 times dichotomously branched, many-flowered, usually loose and divergent, finely puberulent through- out; peduncles conspicuously flattened, 4.5-7.5 cm long; pedicels slender, 1-3 mm long; foliaceous bracts few, ca. 1.5 cm long and 4 mm wide, simple, long-stipitate; bractlets and prophylls linear, 1-3 mm long. Flowers fragrant, corolla blue or lavender.
Habit Tree
Distribution In wet thickets from sea level to 600 m, said to be fairly common on hilly land bordering Gatun Lake on the Atlantic watershed. Vitex cooperi occurs from Guatemala to Panama.
Note The wood is durable on contact with soil, splits easily in straight lines, and is used for implement handles, posts, cross-ties, and stringers, as well as in house construction. The wood seems to have a perishable heart, because one often finds trees standing with the trunk in a shell-like state. Insects and other animals inhabit the inner hollow. Samples of the wood have been made into beautiful turnery and canes, as well as table-top inlays. It works up under plane and knife much like teak. It often has a beautiful streaked or mottled figure. The name "yellow manwood," used by Panamanian and Costa Rican negroes, refers to its strength and durability. The wood is sometimes confused with "black manwood" (Min- quartia guianensis).
Specimen CANAL ZONE: Azote de Caballo road near Madden Dam before first saddle dam, Stern & Chambers 159 (MO, NY, US). CHIRIQUf: Progreso, Cooper & Slater 156 (AAH, F, GH, NY, PH, US, YU), 195 (F, GH, NY, US, YU), 241 (F, NY, US, YU). Near San Felix, 0-120 m, Pittier 5267 (GH NY, US). Near San Bartolome, Peninsula de Burica, 0-50 m, Woodson & Schery 937 (MO, NY, US). Without locality, Duke 13572 (BMIC). VERAGUAS: Fischer 1 (F, YU).
 
 
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