06 - CARAGUATÁ
Bromelia balansae Mez (BROMELIACEAE)
06 - Caraguatá - Bromelia balansae Mez (BROMELIACEAE)
Rosette-shaped herb, terrestrial, with a characteristic bromeliad aspect, from 0.7 to 2.4 mx 1.3 to 2.5 cm. Leaves with pointed apex and margins with dark brown spines. Flowers formed in small groups, with bracts in the floral scape, reddish at the base and whitish near the inflorescences, 3.3 to 4.5 cm; white sepals and wine petals. Rounded, yellow, fibrous fruits, shiny peel, acid flavor, with small, flat black seeds. Flowering from August to February and fruiting from February to April.
Distribution: In Brazil, it is distributed from the North region in the Amazon Forest, through the Midwest, in the Pantanal and in Campo Cerrado, Cerrado and Cerradão, to the South region in the Atlantic Forest.
Situation in São Paulo: Found in some vacant lots.
How to plant: The collection is difficult, as they have many thorns. Cut some leaves in half for easy handling, or use only the side shoots. Big specimens don't even think about it - if they're not in danger, leave them where they are.
Uses: Ornamental plant, suitable for the formation of hedges. The inflorescence of this plant is beautiful and the fruits, showy and aromatic, are used for cough syrups and in the preparation of drinks, sweets and soft drinks. Due to the acid flavor, high content of enzymes and calcium oxalate, it is recommended to cook the fruits before consumption.
DURIGAN, G. PLANTS OF THE CERRADO PAULISTA: IMAGES OF A THREATENED LANDSCAPE. PÁGINAS & LETRAS EDITORA E GRÁFICA, 2004.
WANDERLEY, MGL; MARTINS, SE (COORDS.) BROMELIACEAE IN: MELHEN, TS ET AL. FANEROGAMIC FLORA OF THE STATE OF SÃO PAULO. INSTITUTE OF BOTANICS, SÃO PAULO, VOL. 5, PP: 39-162, 2007.