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Chinese Plant Names | Family List | Lauraceae | Persea

Persea americana Mill.


Description from Flora of China

Laurus persea Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 130. 1753; Persea gratissima C. F. Gaertner.

Evergreen trees, ca. 10 m tall. Bark gray-green, longitudinally fissured. Leaves alternate; petiole 2-5 cm, slightly sulcate adaxially, sparsely pubescent; leaf blade usually somewhat glaucous abaxially, green adaxially, narrowly elliptic, elliptic, ovate, or obovate, 8-20 × 5-12 cm, leathery, sparsely yellowish brown pubescent adaxially but very densely so abaxially when mature, midrib conspicuously elevated abaxially, impressed on lower part but plane on upper part adaxially, lateral veins 5-7 pairs, very elevated abaxially, slightly elevated adaxially, base cuneate or acute to subrounded, apex acute. Cymose panicles 8-14 cm, most of them inserted on lower part of branchlet, pedunculate; peduncle 4.5-7 cm, peduncle and rachis densely yellowish brown pubescent; bracts and bracteoles filiform, ca. 2 mm, densely yellowish brown pubescent. Pedicels up to 6 mm, densely yellowish brown pubescent. Flowers yellow-greenish, 5-6 mm. Perianth densely yellowish brown pubescent outside and inside; perianth tube obconical, ca. 1 mm; perianth lobes 6, oblong, 4-5 mm, obtuse, outer 3 smaller, all dilated after anthesis and caducous. Fertile stamens 9, ca. 4 mm; filaments filiform, complanate, densely pilose, those of 3rd whorl each with 2 complanate ovate and orange glands at base, others glandless; anthers 4-celled; cells introrse in 1st and 2nd whorls, extrorse in 3rd whorl. Staminodes 3, of innermost whorl, sagittate-cordate, ca. 0.6 mm, glabrous, stalked; stalk ca. 1.4 mm, pilose. Ovary ovoid, ca. 1.5 mm, densely pilose; style ca. 2.5 mm, densely pilose; stigma slightly dilated, discoid. Fruit yellow-green or reddish brown, large, usually pear-shaped, sometimes ovoid or globose, 8-18 cm; exocarp corky; mesocarp fleshy and edible. Fl. Feb-Mar, fr. Aug-Sep.

This species is a famous fruit tree (avocado).

Cultivated on a small scale. Fujian (Fuzhou, Zhangzhou), Guangdong (Guangzhou, Shantou), Hainan (Haikou), Sichuan (Xichang), Taiwan, S Yunnan (Xishuangbanna) [native to tropical America; widely cultivated in tropical to warm-temperate regions elsewhere].


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Flora of China  
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