Commercial Timbers


H. G. Richter and M. J. Dallwitz

Cordia alliodora (Ruiz & Pavon) Oken (Canalete, laurel blanco, louro)

Nomenclature etc. BORAGINACEAE. Trade and local names: laurel blanco (cAm, sAm); pardillo (VE). Not protected under CITES regulations.

Description based on 6 specimens. Tree. Geographic distribution: Caribbean, or Mexico and Central America to tropical South America.

General. Growth ring boundaries indistinct or absent. Heartwood basically brown to yellow (pale yellowish brown), often with streaks. Sapwood colour similar to heartwood colour, or distinct from heartwood colour (sapwood slightly paler than the heartwood).

Vessels. Vessels arranged in no specific pattern. Perforation plates simple. Intervessel pits alternate, average diameter (vertical) 5–6 µm. Vessel-ray pits with distinct borders, similar to intervessel pits. Helical thickenings absent. Tyloses in vessels present.

Tracheids and fibres. Fibres of medium wall thickness. Average fibre length 1128–1827 µm. Fibre pits mainly restricted to radial walls, simple to minutely bordered. Fibres non-septate.

Axial parenchyma. Axial parenchyma banded or not banded. Axial parenchyma bands marginal (or seemingly marginal), fine, up to three cells wide. Axial parenchyma paratracheal. Paratracheal axial parenchyma scanty, or vasicentric to aliform. Aliform parenchyma lozenge. Axial parenchyma as strands. Average number of cells per axial parenchyma strand 2–4.

Rays. Rays 3–5 per tangential mm, multiseriate (also if only few), 3–4 cells wide. Rays composed of two or more cell types (heterocellular). Heterocellular rays with square and upright cells restricted to marginal rows, mostly 1 marginal row of upright or square cells. Sheath cells present.

Storied structures. Storied structure absent.

Secretory structures. Intercellular canals absent.

Cambial variants. Included phloem absent.

Mineral inclusions. Crystals present or not observed, prismatic, located in ray cells. Crystal-containing ray cells upright and/or square or procumbent. Number of crystals per cell or chamber one. Cystoliths absent. Silica not observed.

Physical and chemical tests. Heartwood not fluorescent. Water extract fluorescent (light greenish blue); basically yellow or shade of yellow. Ethanol extract fluorescent (light greenish blue). Colour of ethanol extract yellow or shade of yellow.

Illustrations. • Transverse section. Cordia alliodora. • Tangential section. Cordia alliodora. • Radial section. Cordia alliodora.

The interactive key allows access to the character list, illustrations, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting specified attributes, summaries of attributes within groups of taxa, and geographical distribution.

Cite this publication as: ‘Richter, H.G., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2000 onwards. Commercial timbers: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. In English, French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish. Version: 25th June 2009.’.