Piper piscatorum

Primary tabs

Piper piscatorum

Description

Subshrub, to 1 m tall. Stem glabrous or glabrescent; upper internodes finely striate. Petiole 0.5-2 cm long, vaginate at base; blade subcoriaceous, dull green, not conspicuously glandular-dotted, elliptic-oblong to narrowly ovate, (5.5-)7.5-17(-19.5) x (2.5-)3.5-6.5(-7.5) cm, apex acuminate, base equal or almost equally attached to petiole, subacute to obtuse or rounded, glabrous; pinnately veined, secondary veins (5-)7-8(-11) per side, originating from throughout primary vein, anastomosing well within margin, impressed or slightly prominulous above, prominent below, tertiary venation obsolete. Inflorescence erect; peduncle 0.4-0.5(-1) cm long, glabrous; spike 4-7 cm long, green, apiculate; rachis pubescent; floral bracts cucullate, glabrous. Infructescence to 6 cm long; fruits separate at maturity, not sulcate, globose, 1.5 mm in diam., papillose at apex, glabrescent, stigmas 4, sessile.

Distribution

Guianas: Southern America:, Brazil West-Central (Mato Grosso present); Venezuela (Venezuela present)
Venezuela and Brazil (Mato Grosso); not yet reported from the Guianas, but expected to be used there too as fish poison.

Uses

Roots and branches are used as fish poison; also used to alleviate pain of teeth and gums. ().
According to R. Callejas, the plants have an anaesthetic effect.

Notes

For differences with Piper aulacospermum, see note to the latter.