Resource Details

Fruit production of the Ungurahua palm (Oenocarpus bataua subsp. bataua, Arecaceae) in an indigenous managed reserve (Produccion de la palma ungurahua (Oenocarpus bataua subsp. bataua, Arecaceae) en una reserva indigena bajo manejo)

Literature: Journal Articles

Miller, C. 2002, "Fruit production of the Ungurahua palm (Oenocarpus bataua subsp. bataua, Arecaceae) in an indigenous managed reserve", Economic Botany, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 165-176.


NY Botanic Garden


Economic Botany

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Species Info

  • Oenocarpus batua (Ungurahua)


  • This article reviews the biology and use of the Amazonian palm Oenocarpus batua, known in Ecuador as ungurahua.  It is a mid-story palm that grows throughout the terra firme sites in the Amazon Basin and wet coastal areas of Ecuador, Trinidad, and Panama.
  • The tree is used for oil, fibre, fruit, and fronds. Studies have found it is the 2nd most valuable non-timber forest product in the region.
  • Oil is valuable locally and for export (cooking, cosmetics), but the market has not been explored extensively.
  • Oenocarpus batua reproduces approximately every two years; time from pollination to mature fruits = 10~14 months. Flower duration ~ 4 weeks. The author found that fruits peak in late dry - early wet season, but are available in some quantity throughout the year.
  • Production: Measured 700 kg / ha of fruit every two years (~51.8 kg oil / two years). The author found that traditional methods to predict fruit abundance (dbh, height, leaf counts) were unreliable.
  • Conservation: the author found that over-exploitation was not a problem (most likely because O. batua has traditionally been planted in forest areas by indigenous peoples). As it grows well in full sun, the author recommends this species for agroforestry use.

Geographical Region

  • Amazon Basin
  • Ecosystems

  • Tropical Wet Forest
  • Country

  • Ecuador
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