Tree up to 30m tall, or shrub, monoecious. Branchlets sparsely to densely white to brownpuberulous. Stipules free, semi-amplexicaul, 0.2-0.5 cm long, puberulous to almost glabrous; petiole 0.2-0.6 cm long; blade subcoriaceous to chartaceous, elliptic to narrowly elliptic or obovate to narrowly obovate, (2-)4-13 x (l-)2-6 cm, apex acuminate to acute to obtuse to emarginate, base acute to obtuse, margin entire, sometimes denticulate, glabrous above, almost glabrous, appressed-puberulous, (sub)velutinous or scabrous beneath, mostly distinctly papillate; primary vein almost plane above, veins more or less prominent beneath, secondary veins 6-14 pairs, tertiary venation reticulate. Inflorescences usually bisexual, discoid to broadly turbinate to hemisphaerical, often more or less lobed, 0.3-1.2 cm in diam., subsessile or up to 2 cm long pedunculate. Staminate flowers a few to numerous, perianth 0.2-0.4 mm high, 3-4-lobed; stamen 1. Pistillate flowers 1 to several; stigmas 0.1-0.3 mm long. Infructescences (sub)globose to turbinate and ca. 1.2 cm in diam., or if containing 2 or more fruits, then more or less lobed and up to 1.6 cm in diam., at maturity reddish.
Guianas present, tropical America present
Wide-spread in tropical America; common in the Guianas.
English: bois de lettre, kapiteinletterhout, letter wood, letterhout, lettre mouchette, manletterhout, paida, pakael, pakasa, snake wood, sokone ibiberoe, tibikishe