Sideroxylon horridum

Sideroxylon horridum (Griseb.) T. D. Penn.

Synonym: Bumelia glomerata

Common Names: Green Thorn, Shake Hand

Family: Sapotaceae

Habit: Sideroxylon horridum grows as a large shrub to small tree up to 9 m in height.  Young stems are brown pubescent.  Branching pattern with stems at right angles. The leaves are arranged alternately (often clustered), to 4 cm in length (usually smaller), variable in shape from obovate with a flat or rounded leaf apex to elliptical with an acute leaf apex.  The leaf margin is entire.  Short branches occur as spines.

The complete, perfect, actinomorphic, and subsessile flowers are arranged in groups of 1-4 arising in the axils of leaves. The calyx has 5 unfused brown pubescent sepals.  The corolla has 5 white fused petals.  There are 5 stamens fused to the corolla and numerous staminodes. The ovary is superior with 1 locule and seed. The fruit is a drupe at maturity.

Habitat: Sideroxylon horridum grows in open areas (that are often disturbed) in Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formation – Forest/Woodland/Shrublands (coppice and scrublands).

Distribution: Sideroxylon horridum occurs in the central and northern islands groupings in the Lucayan Archipelago as well as Cuba, Hispaniola, and the Cayman Islands.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Sideroxylon horridum is not known to be used medicinally in the Bahamas.