Commercial Timbers

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H. G. Richter and M. J. Dallwitz

Mouriri spp. (Pau ripa)

Nomenclature etc. MELASTOMATACEAE. M. crassifolia, M. ficoides, M. huberi. Trade and local names: perhuetamo, guarotaro, komotolie, claro (sAm). Not protected under CITES regulations.

Description based on 5 specimens. Tree. Geographic distribution: tropical South America.

General. Heartwood basically brown red (dark greyish brown to reddish). Sapwood colour similar to heartwood colour. Density 0.75–0.85 g/cm³.

Vessels. Wood diffuse-porous. Vessels exclusively solitary. Average tangential vessel diameter 98–116 µm. Average number of vessels/mm² 6–9. Average vessel element length 261–387 µm. Perforation plates simple. Intervessel pits alternate, average diameter (vertical) 5–6 µm, vestured. Vessel-ray pits with distinct borders, similar to intervessel pits. Other deposits in heartwood vessels present.

Tracheids and fibres. Fibres of medium wall thickness to very thick-walled. Average fibre length 789–912 µm. Fibre pits mainly restricted to radial walls, simple to minutely bordered or distinctly bordered. Fibres non-septate.

Axial parenchyma. Axial parenchyma paratracheal. Paratracheal axial parenchyma aliform, or confluent. Aliform parenchyma winged. Axial parenchyma as strands. Average number of cells per axial parenchyma strand 3–8.

Rays. Rays 12–18 per tangential mm, exclusively uniseriate. 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. Disjunctive ray parenchyma end walls distinct.

Cambial variants. Included phloem present, diffuse.

Mineral inclusions. Crystals present or not observed (in some species present, in others absent), styloids or elongate (only in included phloem). Number of crystals per cell or chamber more than one. Silica not observed.

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

Illustrations. • Transverse section. Mouriri angulicostata. Note diffusely distributed islands of included phloem (PH). PH. PH. PH. • Tangential section. Mouriri angulicostata. PH. • Radial section. Mouriri angulicostata. PH. PH. • Styloid crystals. Mouriri princeps. Some Mouriri species, e.g., M. princeps, feature small to extremely large and flat styloid crystals located in the included phloem islands (photo taken under semi-polarized light).


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. http://delta-intkey.com’.

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