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Luehea candida


Native to:



Central America, Colombia and Venezuela.

Chiefly on dry, brushy or wooded hillsides. Up to1800 meters above sea level. 5 meter shrub

Luehea candida

Ecological value:

Pollinated primarily by sphingid moths, but is also visited by flies, stingless bees, butterflies although these are believed to be ineffective pollinators. Fruits are eaten by wildlife including white-faced capuchin monkeys (Cebus capucinus).

Material uses:

The bark contains a tough fiber that can be removed in strips and is often used as temporary cordage. Wood density low, sometimes used for fence posts or small interior furniture.

Edible uses:

Unspecified food source.

Medicinal use:

No record on this species. Most medicinal info is assigned to the species L. divaricata. L. seemanii has an astringent bark, used to treat insect, snake and scorpion bites.

Other details:

The large woody capsules are fastened to the end of a stick and used for beating chocolate into a froth. Large trees are showy when in flower because of the abundance of large, pure white blossoms.


Alex Anez Folla/Christine Facella


“Luehea Candida (Moc. & Sessé Ex DC.) Mart. | Plants of the World Online | Kew Science.” n.d. Plants of the World Online. Accessed November 25, 2023.
‌Perry, Susan, ‘Conformism in the food processing techniques of white-faced capuchin monkeys (Cebus capucinus)’, Animal Cognition, 2009
“Luehea Candida - Useful Tropical Plants.” n.d. Accessed November 13, 2023.
Harper and Franke, ‘Pollination of Leuhea (Tiliaceae) In Costa Rican Deciduous Forest’, Ecological Society of America, 1982.

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