Skip to main content
This species is accepted, and its native range is Costa Rica to W. Panama.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium


CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

General Description
Epiphytic climber, often occurring high in canopy; sap clear; stem appressed-climbing, thick, creeping, leaf scars conspicuous, 1.5--2 cm long, 1--3 cm wide; internodes short, thick, broader than long, 1.5--5 cm long, 3--9 cm diam., olive-green to gray-green, becoming tannish white to brownish, scurfy; epidermis peeling and cracking with age; roots few per node, to 7 mm diam., light reddish brown, drying dark reddish brown, smooth, epidermis peeling; cataphylls soft, 28--54 cm long, unribbed to bluntly ribbed to sharply 2-ribbed near apex, green to reddish, sometimes dark green-striate, promptly deciduous; LEAVES: petioles 50--85 cm long, 1--2 cm diam., thicker than broad, obtusely V-shaped, broadly sulcate adaxially, rounded abaxially, with adaxial margins sharp, surface medium to dark green-striate with a weak maroon to dark green ring around apex; blades ovate-oblong, coriaceous, acute to more or less acuminate at apex (the acumen inrolled), subcordate to cordate at base, 50--76 cm long, 21--43 cm wide (1.7--2.6 times longer than wide), upper surface dark green, semiglossy to glossy, lower surface matte, much paler (often tinged purplish violet when young); margins hyaline to yellowish green, sometimes revolute; anterior lobe 48--77.5 cm long, 20--50 cm wide (3.4--6.3 times longer than posterior lobes); posterior lobes 9--19 cm long, 9.6--17.8(24) cm wide, rounded; midrib flat to weakly raised, yellowish green to cream, paler than surface above, convex, weakly striate, paler than surface below; basal veins (1)3--6, mostly 4 per side, with 1--2 (or sometimes all) free to base, 4th to 6th veins coalesced 3--4 cm; posterior rib 0.8--4 cm long, not at all naked or naked to 4 cm; primary lateral veins (10)18--21 per side, departing midrib at a 50--75º angle, straight or weakly arcuate to the margins, sunken to weakly quilted and paler than surface above, convex to raised and paler than surface below; interprimary veins weakly sunken and paler than surface above, weakly raised and darker than surface below; minor veins darker than surface below, arising from both the midrib and primary lateral veins. INFLORESCENCES more or less erect, 1--3 per axil; peduncle (3.5)5--9 cm long, 7--27 mm diam., flattened adaxially, pale green to reddish green, or white, often dark green-striate; spathe coriaceous, 15--27 cm long, [(2.1)2.9--4.6 times longer than peduncle)], weakly constricted near the middle (opening 16.5 cm long); spathe blade at anthesis pale green, pale speckled, with margins reddish pink outside, 10--19 cm long, 2--6 cm diam. (the opening to 9 cm long), tinged reddish to maroon (B & K red-purple 2/7) inside; spathe tube pale green, minutely white-short-lineate outside, 5.9--14 cm long, 3--5.5 cm diam., reddish to maroon (B & K red-purple 10/3 to 2/10) inside; spadix sessile or weakly stipitate; tapered, 14.5--25 cm long, tapered, broadest near the base; pistillate portion green to yellow-green, slightly tapered toward the apex to cylindrical, 3.3--10 cm long, 1.1--2.5 cm diam. at apex, 1.4--1.7 cm diam. at middle, 1.5--3 cm wide at base, with 19-25 flowers per spiral; staminate portion 9.2--20 cm long; fertile staminate portion creamy white, becoming orange-red (post-anthesis), tapered, 1.6--2.8 cm diam. at base, 1.5--2 cm diam. at middle, 7--12 mm diam. ca. 1 cm from apex, broadest at the base, narrower than the pistillate or sterile portions; sterile staminate portion narrower than the pistillate portion, white, 17--28 mm diam.; pistils 3.3--4.7 mm long, 1.6--2.5 mm diam.; ovary 8--14-locular, 3.7--4mm long, 2--2.6 mm diam., with sub-basal placentation; ovules 4--8(12) per locule, striate, 2-seriate, usually contained within translucent ovule sac, 0.2--0.6 mm long, about equal in length to or shorter than funicle; funicle 0.2 mm long, style 1.2--2.3 mm long, 1.6--2.1 mm diam., similar to style type B or D; style apex usually flat; style apex flat or with a borad boss, pronounced (with divit in center); stigma subdiscoid to globular, unlobed to weakly lobed, 1.8--1.9 mm diam., 0.3--0.7 mm high, covering entire style apex, depressed medially; the androecium truncate, margins 4--6-sided; thecae elliptical to oblong-obovate, 0.1 mm wide; sterile staminate flowers blunt, 4--5-sided, 3.5--4.5 mm long, 1.5 mm wide. INFRUCTESCENCE: Berries greenish (nearly ripe).
Ranges from Costa Rica (no doubt into adjacent southeastern Nicaragua as well) to Panama on the Atlantic slope.
Premontane wet forest and Tropical wet forest life zones.

Native to:

Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panamá

Philodendron davidsonii Croat appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Tally, J. [52232], Costa Rica K000400168 isotype

First published in Aroideana 6: 39 (1983)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. & Frodin, D.G. (2002). World Checklist and Bibliography of Araceae (and Acoraceae): 1-560. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Hammel, B.E. & al. (2003). Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica 2: 1-694. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis.
  • Stevens, W.D., Ulloa U., C., Pool, A. & Montiel, O.M. (2001). Flora de Nicaragua Monographs in Systematic Botany from the Missouri Botanical Garden 85: i-xlii, 1-2666.


CATE Araceae

  • Croat, T.B. 1997. A revision of Philodendron subgenus Philodendron (Araceae) for Mexico and Central America Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard.. 84: 311-704

CATE Araceae
Haigh, A., Clark, B., Reynolds, L., Mayo, S.J., Croat, T.B., Lay, L., Boyce, P.C., Mora, M., Bogner, J., Sellaro, M., Wong, S.Y., Kostelac, C., Grayum, M.H., Keating, R.C., Ruckert, G., Naylor, M.F. and Hay, A., CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.