Leucothrinax morrisii

Leucothrinax morrisii (H. Wendl). C. Lewis & Zona

Synonym: Thrinax morrisii

Common Names: Thatch Palm, Buffalo Top

Family: Arecaceae

Habit: Leucothrinax morrisii grows as a medium size tree up to 5 meters in height and to 20 cm in diameter.  The bark is smooth.  Leaves are arranged spirally at the top of the trunk.  The petiole base splits along its center. The leaves are palmate to approximately 75 centimeters wide and deeply divided.  The adaxial leaf surface is dark green and the abaxial surface is covered in dense light colored pubescence.

The complete, perfect, actinomorphic flowers are arranged in a large panicle. The calyx has 3 sepals and the corolla has 3 petals. The calyx and corolla are pale yellow and fused together forming a single whorl. There are 6 stamens. The ovary is superior with a single locule and seed.   The fruit is a drupe that is white to light brown at maturity.

Habitat: Leucothrinax morrisii grows in Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formation – Forests/Shrublands on either a sand or limestone substrate.

Distribution: Leucothrinax morrisii occurs on all of the island groupings in the Lucayan Archipelago, as well as Florida, the Caribbean region and Mexico south through Central America.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Leucothrinax morrisii is used medicinally in the Lucayan Archipelago for general strengthening teas as well as to treat pain.