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The Cycad Pages
Zamia soconuscensis

Zamia soconuscensis "Schutzman, Vovides & Dehgan", Bot. Gaz. 149(3): 347-351 (1988).
"TYPE: Mexico, Chiapas, Feb 1939, Matuda 2659 (holo F iso MICH CR)."


Etymology: Named for the geographic area, Sierra del Soconusco (Sierra Madre de Chiapas), in which it is found.

Historical notes:

Distinguishing features: Linear-lanceolate leaflet with entire margins and an attenuate apices. Leaflets often adaxially concave. Zamia soconuscensis is in many ways similar to Z. inermis. Zamia inermis has smooth petioles and erect leaves with very coriaceous leaflets with short acute apices. In contrast, Z. soconuscensis has prickled petioles and spreading to recurved leaves with mildly coriaceous leaflets with long acute to attenuate apices.

Distribution and habitat: Found as an understory plant from 500-1000 m growing on organic clay soils in evergreen forest to cloud forest.

Conservation: The species appears to be threatened in habitat as a result of clearing for agricultural purposes. However, the efforts of Andrew Vovides to establish nurseries for endemic plants, including cycads are proceeding successfully, so that wild collecting is minimized, propagated material is entering the horticultural market. and habitat is being conserved to some extent. 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Category V,II,V.

Description:

Stem short arborescent, erect to decumbent, 25-50 cm long and 5-25 cm in diam.

Cataphylls triangular basally, linear-lanceolate apically, 3.5-5 cm long, 1.3-2 cm wide.

Leaves 1-6, spreading to recurved, 0.4-2 m long; petiole 14-30 cm, prickled particularly near base; rachis with 20-40 pairs of leaflets, prickled in lower half.

Leaflets linear-lanceolate, falcate to subfalcate, often concave adaxially, cuneate basally, long acute to attenuate apically,

margins entire, median ones 20-35 cm long, 3-5 mm.

Pollen cones brown, cylindrical, 8-10 cm long, 2-2.5 cm diam.; peduncle 4-6 cm long.

Seed cones brown, cylindrical, abruptly acuminate apically, 12-22 cm long, 7-10 cm diam.; peduncle 3-4 cm long.

Seeds orange-pink to light red, ovoid, 2.2-2.6 cm long, 1.4-1.9 cm diam.

2n = 16.


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