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Pterodon emarginatus - Vogel

Common Name Faveiro, sucupira, sucupira-branca
Family Fabaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Savannah and its transition to semideciduous forest, often in dense groups, characteristic of dry and sandy areas[419 ].
Range S. America - central, eastern and northern Brazil, Bolivia.
Edibility Rating    (0 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (4 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Pterodon emarginatus Faveiro, sucupira, sucupira-branca

Pterodon emarginatus Faveiro, sucupira, sucupira-branca
João Medeiros wikimedia.org


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Pterodon emarginatus is a slow-growing, deciduous tree characterized by an ellipsoidal crown and more or less straight bole reaching up to 60cm in diameter. It grows up to 16m tall and is commonly found in South America. Rheumatism can be treated using an essential oil from the bark of this plant. 'Batata de sucupira', a tuberous swelling on the roots, is used in the treatment of diabetes. Oil from fruits is used to prevent the occurrence of diseases. There are no known edible uses of this plant. Wood is highly durable and has excellent mechanical properties. It is used in naval and general construction, bridges, poles, railway sleepers, etc. It is also used for fuel and to make charcoal.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of lolypop
Pterodon emarginatus is a deciduous Tree growing to 12 m (39ft) by 12 m (39ft) at a medium rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10. The flowers are pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Acosmium inornatum (Mohlenbr.) Yakovlev Commilobium polygalaeflorus Benth. Commilobium pubescens Ben


Edible Uses

None known

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.
Antirheumatic  Parasiticide

An essential oil obtained from the bark is applied externally to affected areas in the treatment of rheumatism[739 ]. A tuberous swelling that is occasionally found on the roots, known as 'batata de sucupira', is used in the treatment of diabetes[739 ]. The oil from the fruits has been shown to inhibit the penetration of Schistosoma cercariae (the larval stage that causes schistosomiasis) into the skin of humans[739 ]. The oil can therefore be used as a prophylactic treatment to prevent the disease[739 ]. This property is due to the presence of 14,15-epoxigeranylgeraniol in the oil[739 ].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Charcoal  Essential  Fuel  Parasiticide  Wood

Agroforestry Uses: Although slow-growing, this species makes a good component in planting schemes for restoring native woodland, especially in the drier areas of the cerrado and adjoining semideciduous forest[419 ]. Other Uses The wood is compact, cross-grained, heavy, very hard, difficult to split, with excellent mechanical properties and very durable, even when in contact with the soil. It is used in naval construction, general construction, bridge stanchions, poles, railway sleepers, cart bodies etc[419 ]. The wood is used for fuel and to make charcoal[419 ].

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Requires a sunny position[419 ]. Prefers the drier, sandy soils in the wild, but in cultivation can tolerate a wider range of conditions so long as the soil is well-drained[419 ]. Established plants are very drought tolerant[419 ]. A slow-growing tree when very young, though it does speed up somewhat after 2 - 3 years[419 , 420 ]. Although many species within the family Fabaceae have a symbiotic relationship with soil bacteria, this species is said to be devoid of such a relationship and therefore does not fix atmospheric nitrogen[755 ].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

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Seed - it has a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing to speed up germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing. Seedlings are very sensitive to root disturbance, so the seed is best sown as soon as it is ripe in a partially shaded position in individual containers. A very low germination rate can be expected from untreated seed, with the seed sprouting within 30 - 50 days[419 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Faveiro - Portuguese (Brazil), sucupira - Portuguese (Brazil), sucupira-branca - Portuguese (Brazil). fava-de-santo-inácio, faveiro, sucupira, sucupira-branca.

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Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Brazil; Bolivia, Plurinational State of

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.

Conservation Status

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

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther

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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