Zamia fairchildiana

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Figure 1. Z. fairchildiana


Distribution & Habitat:

Found mainly in south-eastern Costa Rica but with some populations occurring to Cuna Yala in eastern Panama. It is found at elevations from 50 to 1500m, but the largest populations occur on slopes of varying soil types ranging from clay to rocky in primary and secondary rainforest at elevations from 400 to 900m.


A very attractive plant, up to 2m tall, with a stem up to 15cm in diameter. It has up to 10 leaves, to 2.5m long, each with a densely prickled petiole, and up to 30 pairs of oblong, pointed glossy green leaflets, up to 40cm long, and 4cm wide.


Very closely related to Z. pseudomonticola


Warm, shady, and moist conditions are best. Very good in pots.

Figure 2. Z. fairchildiana in habitat, Osa peninsula, Costa Rica.
Figure 3. Z. fairchildiana female cones.
Figure 4. Z. fairchildiana female cones.
Figure 5. Z. fairchildiana male cones.
Figure 6. Z. fairchildiana in habitat, Puntarenas State, Costa Rica.


Contributed by:

Mike Gray (Figure 1)
Michael Calonje, (Figure 2,3,4&5)

External Links:

Cycad Pages, IUCN, JSTOR, Trebrown

Google, Google Images, Flickr, PACSOA Forums