Butia capitata

Butia capitata
Butia capitata, Tresco, Isles of Scilly, UK
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Arecales
Family: Arecaceae
Genus: Butia
Species: B. capitata
Binomial name
Butia capitata
(Mart.) Becc.[1]

Butia capitata, also known as jelly palm, is a palm native to Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay.[1] This palm grows up to 6m (exceptionally 8m) in a slow but steady manner. It is easily identifiable with feather palm pinnate leaves that arch inwards towards a thick stout trunk.

Butia capitata is notable as one of the hardiest feather palms, tolerating temperatures down to about 10 °C; it is widely cultivated in temperate climates. In the United States, Butia capitata is grown along the West Coast from San Diego to Seattle, and along the East Coast from Florida to Virginia Beach, VA, with a few known plantings north to the Long Island, NY area. Butia capitata has become naturalized in some areas of the Southern United States, from Virginia to Florida.

Ripe fruit are about the size of large cherry, and yellowish/orange in color, but can also include a blush towards the tip. The taste is a mixture of pineapple, apricot, and vanilla. Taste can vary depending on soil conditions, and the tastes of apple, pineapple, and banana together is also common. It is tart and sweet at the same time, with a flesh similar to a loquat, but slightly more fibrous.


The triterpenes cylindrin and lupeol methyl ether can be isolated from Butia capitata leaf epicuticular waxes.[2] The pulp is a good source of β-carotene and provitamin A.[3]

9 foot Pindo after the Blizzard of 2014 in Roslyn Harbor, New York



  1. 1 2 "Taxon: Butia capitata (Mart.) Becc.". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville Area. Retrieved 2010-04-24.
  2. Triterpene methyl ethers from palmae epicuticular waxes. S. García, H. Heinzen, C. Hubbuch, R. Martínez, X. de Vries and P. Moyna, Phytochemistry, August 1995, Volume 39, Issue 6, Pages 1381–1382, doi:10.1016/0031-9422(95)00173-5
  3. Fruits of Butia capitata (Mart.) Becc as good sources of β-carotene and provitamin A. Juliana Pereira Faria, Egle M. A. Siqueira, Roberto Fontes Vieira and Tânia da Silveira Agostini-Cost, Revista Brasileira de Fruticultura, Oct. 2011, vol.33, no.spe1, doi:10.1590/S0100-29452011000500084

External links

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