Fruit trees and useful plants in Amazonian life

Fruit trees and useful plants
in Amazonian life


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Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Rome 2011


This book features the uncommon quality of bringing together original scientific knowledge on fruits and useful plants of the Amazon forest and the sensibility to detect the deep interaction between life, traditional knowledge of our forests and folk culture.
With its language at the same time accessible, pleasant and practical, the book has become a vehicle to disseminate information that is fundamental to the future of the Amazon and to bring alive the dream of a development model that is economically and socially fair, and that respects the environment.

Table of Contents

Authors and contributors: contact information
Glossary of Portuguese and forestry terms
Map of South America



Map of the Amazon
Amazonian plant diversity
Health and nutrition: compliments of the forest
Compatible or conflicting use
The impact of seven generations


Who will use this book and how?

Who will use this book and how?
How to play with this book
How to educate with this book: a knowledge network


Trees and vines

Andiroba (Carapa guianensis)
Bacuri (Platonia insignis)
Brazil nut (Bertholletia excelsa)
Cat’s claw (Uncaria tomentosa and Uncaria guianensis)
Copaíba (Copaifera spp.)
Ipê–roxo, pau d’arco (Tabebuia impetiginosa)
Jatobá (Hymenaea courbaril)
Mahogany, mogno (Swietenia macrophylla)
Piquiá (Caryocar villosum)
Rubber tree, seringueira (Hevea brasiliensis)
Titica (Heteropsis spp.)
Uxi, uchi (Endopleura uchi)


Palm trees and diverse other species

Açaí (Euterpe oleracea)
Açaí (solitary) (Euterpe precatoria)
Buriti, moriche palm (Mauritia flexuosa)
Inajá (Attalea maripa [syn: Maximiliana maripa])
Patauá (Oenocarpus bataua)
Pupunha, peach palm (Bactris gasipaes)
Tucumã of Amazonas (Astrocaryum aculeatum [syn: A. tucuma])
Diverse other species


Forests for the people

Conflicting uses: diverse perspectives of forest value
Multiple-use management
HForest culture


Subject themes
Appendix A: Trees and palms with a complete chapter
Appendix B: Other trees and palms mentioned in this    book
Appendix C: Wild animals mentioned in this book


The designations employed and the presentation of material in this publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. The mention of specific companies or products of manufacturers, whether or not these have been patented, does not imply that these have been endorsed or recommended by FAO in preference to others of a similar nature that are not mentioned. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of FAO.

ISBN 978-92-5-107007-9

All rights reserved. FAO encourages reproduction and dissemination of material in this information product. Non-commercial uses will be authorized free of charge, upon request. Reproduction for resale or other commercial purposes, including educational purposes, may incur fees. Applications for permission to reproduce or disseminate FAO copyright material, and all queries concerning rights and licences, should be addressed to:

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or by e-mail to: [email protected]

© FAO, CIFOR and PPI 2011 (English edition)
This edition is a revised and updated version of the original Portuguese edition.
© CIFOR and IMAZON, 2005 (Portuguese edition)