Syagrus campylospatha

Synonymy: None Distribution: Paraguay
Common names: Yatay-mi, yatay Conservation status: Endangered

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This species grows in open, grassy zones of central Paraguay--in rocky and sandy soils, in full sun. One of the Gulliver`s lilliput palms, growing in an area where most of the palms have subterranean stems (e.g. Acrocomia, Attalea, Butia, Syagrus)--a likely adaptation to fire and organically poor soils. A very small palm, S. campylospatha looks similar to the other smaller Butias and Syagrus in the region, except that the leaves are a light grey/blue. The fruit are edible and delicious, and the leaves are utilized by local people. This species is unknown in cultivation, but it would most likely have good tolerance to freezes and may develop a small above-ground trunk and longer leaves in good conditions and partial shade. This is one of the southernmost Syagrus after S. romanzoffiana. Reproduction is by seeds or bulbs.

Photos courtesy and copyright 2001, Gaston Torres Vera; taken in habitat in Paraguay.

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