Commercial Timbers


H. G. Richter and M. J. Dallwitz

Amburana cearensis (Fr. Allem.) A.C. Smith (Cerejeira)

Nomenclature etc. FABACEAE-FABOIDEAE. Syn.: Torresea cearensis Fr. Allem. Trade and local names: cerejeira, amburana, cumarú de cheiro, imburana, umburana (BR); ishipingo, sorioco (PE); roble americano (BO, AR); roble criollo, roble del país, roble, palo trébol, trébol (AR); trébol (PY). Not protected under CITES regulations.

Description based on 6 specimens. Tree. Geographic distribution: tropical South America.

General. Growth ring boundaries distinct or indistinct or absent. Heartwood basically yellow to brown, with streaks or without streaks (occasionally with darker (latewood) striping). Sapwood colour distinct from heartwood colour. Odour distinct (sweetish = cumarin). Density 0.52–0.57–0.65 g/cm³.

Vessels. Vessels present. Wood diffuse-porous. Vessels arranged in no specific pattern, in multiples, commonly short (2–3 vessels) radial rows. Vessel outline rounded. Two distinct vessel diameter classes absent. Average tangential vessel diameter 145–195–230 µm; diameter of vessel lumina: large, or very large. Average number of vessels/mm² 2–6; vessels per square millimetre very few and few. Perforation plates simple. Intervessel pits alternate, average diameter (vertical) 5–7 µm, small, vestured. Vessel-ray pits with distinct borders, similar to intervessel pits, of uniform size or type, of the same type in adjacent elements, located throughout the ray. Helical thickenings absent. Tyloses in vessels absent. Other deposits in heartwood vessels present (dark yellowish or greenish brown).

Tracheids and fibres. Vascular or vasicentric tracheids sporadic to absent. Fibres of medium wall thickness. Average fibre length 700–1000 µm. Average fibre length short and medium. Fibre pits common in both radial and tangential walls, simple to minutely bordered. Helical thickenings absent. Fibres non-septate.

Axial parenchyma. Axial parenchyma present, not banded. Axial parenchyma paratracheal. Paratracheal axial parenchyma aliform and confluent (towards growth ring boundary distinctly confluent or forming irregular bands). Aliform parenchyma lozenge. Axial parenchyma fusiform, or as strands. Average number of cells per axial parenchyma strand 2–4(–6). Unlignified parenchyma absent.

Rays. Rays present, 4–6(–7) per tangential mm, multiseriate (also if only few), (1–)2–3(–4) cells wide, narrow (2–3 seriate) and of medium width (3–5 seriate). Rays with multiseriate portions as wide as uniseriate portions absent. Aggregate rays absent. Rays of one size. Height of large rays up to 500 µm. 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 absent. Tile cells absent. Perforated ray cells absent. Disjunctive ray parenchyma end walls indistinct or absent.

Storied structures. Storied structure present or absent, all rays storied, axial parenchyma storied, vessel elements storied. Arrangement of tiers irregular. Storeying of rays and axial parenchyma often irregular or incomplete.

Secretory structures. Oil and mucilage cells absent. Intercellular canals absent. Laticifers or tanniniferous tubes absent.

Cambial variants. Included phloem absent. Other cambial variants absent.

Mineral inclusions. Crystals present, prismatic, located in ray cells and axial parenchyma cells. Crystal-containing ray cells upright and/or square and procumbent, upright and/or square ray cells not chambered. Crystals in procumbent ray cells not in radial alignment. Crystal-containing axial parenchyma cells chambered. Number of crystals per cell or chamber one. Crystal containing cells of normal size. Cystoliths present. Silica not observed.

Physical and chemical tests. Heartwood fluorescent. Water extract not fluorescent; basically colourless to brown or shade of brown. Ethanol extract not fluorescent. Colour of ethanol extract yellow or shade of yellow. Chrome azurol-S test negative. Froth test positive. Splinter burns to partial ash. Ash white to grey.

Illustrations. • Macro images. Amburana cearensis. Transverse. Tangential. • Transverse section. Amburana cearensis. (Paratracheal parenchyma "normal"). • Transverse section. Amburana cearensis. (Paratracheal parenchyma massively developed). • Tangential section. Amburana cearensis. • Radial section. Amburana cearensis. Note: Prismatic crystals in both axial and ray parenchyma cells (Cr). Cr». Cr».

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.’.