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Cordia bicolor - A.DC.

Common Name Muneco
Family Boraginaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Found at low and medium elevations, in moist or wet areas[ 333 ]. Usually found in the sunnier areas of the forest or as secondary vegetation on open, disturbed sites[ 510 ]. Wet, mixed forest, thickets, or pastures at elevations up to 550 metres[ 331 ].
Range S. America - Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana; C. America - Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Belize, Guatemala, Mexico.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (4 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Moist Soil Full sun
Cordia bicolor Muneco

Indiana Coronado
Cordia bicolor Muneco
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute


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Cordia bicolor is a tropical, fast-growing, short-lived pioneer species with an ability to thrive under extreme environmental conditions. It is a medium-sized tree of up to 20 m tall with very small white flowers that form into dense clusters at the ends of branches. The fruits are small berries. The crown is rounded. The fruit is ovoid and edible. The wood is used as fence post and in rural construction. Central America, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guiana, Guianas, Guyana, Panama, South America, Suriname, Venezuela.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of lolypop
Cordia bicolor is a deciduous Tree growing to 15 m (49ft) by 15 m (49ft) at a fast rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10. The flowers are pollinated by Bees, butterflies, insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Cordia belizensis Lundell Cordia carnosa Rusby Cordia lockhartii Kuntze Cordia trichostyla Pittier G

Plant Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses:

Although we have seen no specific information for this species, the fruits of all members of this genus are said to be edible[ 422 ]. In general the fruit comprises a thin to fairly thick layer of pulpy, sweetish-tasting flesh surrounding a single seed[ 200 ]. The ovoid fruit of this species is about 12mm long and 8mm wide[ 422 ].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

None known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Fencing  Pioneer  Soil stabilization  Wood

Agroforestry Uses: A fast-growing, short-lived pioneer species, it is able to support the harsh, adverse conditions created when the primary forest tree-cover is damaged or destroyed. Its ability to grow, even thrive, under such extreme circumstances is important to the process of forest succession. Cordia's rapid growth quickly establishes an anchoring root system as well as a sheltering crown that help to protect exposed soils and provide the more consistent regimes of humidity and temperature that are required by most other plant species[ 510 ]. Other Uses The wood is used for fence posts and in rural construction[ 333 ].

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

A tropical plant. It grows in wet and moist forests.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees,Edible Shrubs, Woodland Gardening, and Temperate Food Forest Plants. Our new book is Food Forest Plants For Hotter Conditions (Tropical and Sub-Tropical).

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Plant Propagation

Seed - very slow to germinate, the process can be sped up if the seed is scarified by lightly abrading the seedcoat to allow easier ingress of water[ 307 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Cordia bicolor or Muneco

Central America, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guiana, Guianas, Guyana, Panama, South America, Suriname, Venezuela.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

None Known

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Cordia alliodoraEcuador laurel, Cypre, Onion Cordia, Laurel BlancoTree30.0 10-12 FLMHNM224

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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Botanical References

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here
A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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