When time and funding permit, each flower (each plant species) will have its own page, and its own PDF, and eventually its own PPT so that professors and students have plenty of material on Guatemala (and Honduras, etc) to study.

Heliconia adflexa, Coban, Guatemala, Hotel Monja Blanca, FLAAR, by Nicholas Hellmuth

Florifundia
This space is for flowers
we have recently found and photographed.

Reports by FLAAR Mesoamerica
on Flora & Fauna of Parque Nacional Yaxha Nakum Naranjo
Peten, Guatemala, Central America


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Bibliography on Cyperus esculentus
specie

Cyperus esculentus at cebollin, Reserva Aldea Buena Vista, Tapon Creek, Livingston. Photo was taken on April 25, 2021 by Maria Alejandra Gutierrez with a Canon 1DX Mark II camera, Canon 50mm f/2.5 Macro lens, Settings: 1/4000, f/8, ISO 8000.

Cyperus esculentus or “Chufa” is a perennial grass-like plant, is common to found it on the banks of roads, on parcels at rest, on vegetables, on the banks of rivers. We have found it in our field trips at Livingston and what caught our attention was its edible uses. It is said that the tuber is edible, raw, cooked or dried and ground into a powder, also can be obtained oil from the tuber.

According to the Tropical Plants Database, this plant also has medicinal uses: “Tiger nuts are regarded as a digestive tonic, having a heating and drying effect on the digestive system and alleviating flatulence. They also promote urine production and menstruation. The tubers are said to be aphrodisiac, carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, stimulant and tonic. In Ayurvedic medicine they are used in the treatment of flatulence, indigestion, colic, diarrhoea, dysentery, debility and excessive thirst. The leaves are applied topically as a remedy for headache.”

Taxonomy:

Order

Poales

Family

Cyperaceae

Genus

Cyperus

Species

Cyperus esculentus

Common name

Chufa, Coquito, Coyolillo, Coyolito, Cotufa, Tule, zacate de agua, Yellow Nutsedge, Earth Almond

You can learn more about this plant with the following bibliography we prepared for you.

References Cited and Suggested Reading on Cyperus esculentus

  • ATRAN, Scott, LOIS, Mimena and Edilberto UCAN Ek’
  • 2004
  • Plants of the Peten Itza’ Maya. Museum of Anthropology, Memoirs, Number 38, University of Michigan. 248 pages.

    Very helpful and nice collaboration with local Itza’ Maya people. But would help in the future to have a single index that has all Latin, Spanish, and English plant names so that you can find plants more easily. Suzanne Cook’s Lacandon ethnobotany index is significantly easier to use.

    Not available as a download.
  • BALICK, Michael J., NEE, Michael H. and Daniel E. ATHA
  • 2000
  • Checklist of the Vascular Plants of Belize: With Common Names and Uses. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden Vol. 85. 246 pages.
  • BALICK, Michael J. and Rosita ARVIGO
  • 2015
  • Messages from the Gods: A Guide to the Useful Plants of Belize. The New York Botanical Garden, Oxford University Press.
  • CONAP
  • 2001
  • Plan Maestro 2002-2006 Área de Protección Especial Punta de Manabique. CONAP. Fundación Mario Dary Rivera. Guatemala.
  • DIX, Margaret A. and M. W. DIX
  • 1992
  • Recursos biológicos de Yaxhá-Nakúm-Yaloch. 54 pages.

    This is one of the sources for the tree list portion of CONAP Plan Maestro reports on Yaxha in the past decade. Unfortunately the Dix and Dix list is rather limited. The 1999 Schulze and Whitacre list for Tikal is more complete (but all these lists need more field work to improve).

    We have asked several times for a copy of the original Dix and Dix report, but have never received one.
  • DECASTRO, Olga, GARGIULO, Roberta, DEL GUACCIO, Emanuele, CAPUTO, Paolo and Paolo DE LUCA
  • 2015
  • A molecular survey concerning the origin of Cyperus esculentus (Cyperaceae, Poales): two sides of the same coin (weed vs. crop). Annals of Botany 115: 733–745,
  • DEFELICE, Michael
  • 2002
  • Yellow Nutsedge Cyperus esculentus L.: Snack Food of the Gods. Weed Technology, Vol. 16, No. 4, pp. 901-907
  • DJOMDI, Djombi, HAMADOU, Bakari, GIBERT, Olivier, TRAN, Thierry, DELATTRE, Cedric, PIERRE, Guillaume, MICHAUD, Philippe, EJOH, Richard and Robert NDJOUENKEU
  • 2020
  • Innovation in Tigernut (Cyperus Esculentus L.) Milk Production: In Situ Hydrolysis of Starch. Polymers 2020, 12, 1404.

    Available on-line: doi:10.3390/polym12061404
  • FEDICK, S. L.
  • 2010
  • The Maya Forest: destroyed or cultivated by the ancient Maya? Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 107: 953–954.
  • FUNDARY-ONCA
  • 2001
  • Plan Maestro 2002-2006 Área De Protección Especial Punta De Manabique. Consejo Nacional De Áreas Protegidas Fundación Mario Dary Rivera.
  • GOODWIN, Z. A., LÓPEZ, G. N., STUART, N., BRIDGEWATER, G. M., HANSTON, E. M., CAMERON, I. D., MICHELAKIS, D., RATTER, J. A., FURLEY, P. A., KAY, E., WHITEFOORD, C., SOLOMON, J. LLOYD, A. J. and D. J. HARRIS
  • 2013
  • A checklist of the vascular plants of the lowland savannas of Belize, Central America. Phytotaxa 101 (1): 1–119.

    Available Online:
    www.eeo.ed.ac.uk/sea-belize/outputs/Papers/goodwin.pdf
  • HIDALGO, Hugo and Cristofer LOPEZ
  • 2007
  • Propuesta de Incorporación a la Convención Ramsar del Área Protegida “Reserva de Usos Múltiples Río Sarstún”. FUNDAECO.
  • IBARRA-Manríquez, Guillermo, VILLASEÑOR, José Luis and Rafael DURÁN García
  • 1995
  • Riqueza de especies y endemismo del componente arbóreo de la Península de Yucatán, México. Bol. Soco Bot. México 57: 49-77 (1995)
  • HELLMUTH, Nicholas M.
  • 2013
  • Maya Ethnobotany, Complete Inventory, Fruits, nuts, root crops, grains, construction materials, utilitarian uses, sacred plants, sacred flowers 12th edition. FLAAR Reports, FLAAR (USA) and FLAAR Mesoamerica (Guatemala). 106 pages.

    The 13th edition that followed is an update but the 12th edition has tons of material to get you started.
  • HELLMUTH, Nicholas M.
  • 2014
  • Maya Ethnobotany, Complete Inventory, Fruits, nuts, root crops, grains, construction materials, utilitarian uses, sacred plants, sacred flowers 13th edition. FLAAR Reports, FLAAR (USA) and FLAAR Mesoamerica (Guatemala). 111 pages.
  • HITZIGER, Martin
  • 2016
  • Mayan phytotherapy in Guatemala: A transdisciplinary study for ethnographic documentation and local empowerment. PhD dissertation, ETH, Zurich.
  • LEVY Tacher, Samuel I., AGUIRRE Rivera, J. Rogelio, GARCÍA Perez, José D. and María Magdalena MARTÍNEZ Romero
  • 2006
  • Aspectos florísticos de Lacanhá Chansayab, Selva Lacandona,Chiapas. Acta Botánica Mexicana, núm. 77, octubre, 2006, pp. 69-98. Instituto de Ecología, A.C., Pátzcuaro, México.
  • LUNDELL, Cyrus L.
  • 1937
  • The Vegetation of Peten. Carnegie Institution of Washington, Publ. 478. Washington. 244 pages.
  • MEERMAN, J. C., HERRERA, P. and A. HOWE
  • 2003
  • Rapid Ecological Assessment Sarstoon Temash National Park Toledo District, Belize. Volume II: Appendices (Species lists and raw data). Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM). 92 pages.
  • RUIZ, CLAUDIA, et al.
  • 2006
  • Plan Maestro de la Reserva Protectora de Manantiales Cerro San Gil, 2008-2012. Consejo Nacional de Áreas Protegidas (CONAP), Fundacion Para el Ecodesarrollo y la Conservacion (FUNDAECO), The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
  • SÁNCHEZ-Zapata, Elena, FUENTES-Zaragoza, Evangélica, FERNÁNDEZ-López, Juana, SENDRA, Esther, SAYAS, Estrella, NAVARRO, Casilda and Jose Angel PÉREZ-Álvarez
  • 2009
  • Preparation of Dietary Fiber Powder from Tiger Nut. (Cyperus esculentus) Milk (“Horchata”) Byproducts and Its Physicochemical Properties. J. Agric. Food Chem. 2009, 57, 7719–7725.
  • SÁNCHEZ, Elena, FERNÁNDEZ, Juana and Ángel PÉREZ
  • 2012
  • Tiger Nut (Cyperus esculentus) Commercialization: Health Aspects, Composition, Properties, and Food Applications. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, Vol.11
  • STANDLEY, Paul C. and Samuel J. RECORD
  • 1936
  • The Forests and Flora of British Honduras. Field Museum of Natural History. Publication 350, Botanical Series Volume XII. 432 pages plus photographs.
  • STANDLEY, Paul C.
  • 1926
  • Trees and Shrubs of Mexico. Contributions from the United States National Herbarium, Volume 23, Part 5. Smithsonian Institution.

    In this one monograph the species are not listed in alphabetical order, so it’s a mental adventure finding the species you are looking for.

    All monographs by Standley and co-authors can be easily found and downloaded. I would recommend finding the .pdf versions as they are easier to store, easier to copy, and easier to share with students and colleagues.
  • STANDLEY, Paul C.
  • 1930
  • Flora of Yucatan. Botanical Series, Vol. III, No. 3, Publication 279. Field Museum of Natural History.
  • STANDLEY, Paul C. and Julian A. STEYERMARK
  • 1958
  • Flora of Guatemala. Fieldiana: Botany, Volume 24, Part I. Chicago Natural History Museum.
  • VÁSQUEZ Marroquín, Miguel Ángel
  • 2004
  • Plan de Proyecto Parque Nacional Tikal. Parque Nacional Tikal, Petén, Guatemala.
  • WILLIAMS, Louis O.
  • 1981
  • Foods for Early Man. CEIBA, Vol. 24 Núm. 1-2, Escuela Agrícola Panamericana, Zamorano.

 

Suggested webpages with photos and information on Cyperus esculentus

www.backyardnature.net
Jim Conrad’s helpful web site, as usual, photos better than most other web pages.

www.cicy.mx/
Species list.

http://www.conabio.gob.mx/malezasdemexico/cyperaceae/cyperus-esculentus/fichas/ficha.htm
Complete information

www.inriodulce.com
A helpful web site for visitors for Rio Dulce. Species names have changed; best to feature the accepted name and list the synonyms.

https://naturalezatropical.com/
Information and cultivation

http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Cyperus+esculentus
General information, uses and photos

https://pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Cyperus+esculentus
General information and photos

http://www.theplantlist.org
Shows which are Accepted and which are Synonyms.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcQAlNbP9NE
How to eat and how to make milk out of Cyperus esculentus

 

First posted October 2021.
Written by Vivian Hurtado, FLAAR Mesoamerica

 

Parque Nacional Yaxha, Nakum and Naranjo

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