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Zamia integrifolia



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Near Threatened

Threat status

Interesting Facts

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Common Names

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Click on the language to view common names.

Common Names in Chinese:

Quan Yuan Da Su Tie

Common Names in English:

Coontie, Coontie (Seminole), Florida Arrowroot, Koonti, Seminole Bread (Usa), Smooth Zamia


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Family Zamiaceae

Plants superficially palmlike or fernlike, perennial , evergreen , dioecious. Stems subterranean with exposed apex or aboveground, fleshy , stout, cylindric , simple or irregularly branched. Roots with small secondary roots; coral-like roots developing at base of stem at or below soil surface. Leaves pinnately compound , spirally clustered at stem apex, leathery, petiole and rachis unarmed [with stout spines]; leaflets entire or dentate [spinose ], venation dichotomous [netted ]; resin canals absent. Cones axillary , appearing terminal , short-peduncled [sessile], disintegrating at maturity; sporophylls densely crowded, spirally arranged , often covered with indument . Pollen cones soon shed, generally smaller and more numerous than seed cones; sporophylls bearing many crowded, small microsporangia (pollen sacs ) adaxially; pollen spheric, not winged . Seed cones persistent for a year or more, 1(--2) per plant, nearly globose to ovoid , tapering sharply or blunt at apex; sporophylls peltate, thickened and laterally expanded distally, bearing 2(--3) ovules. Seeds angular, inner coat hardened, outer coat fleshy, often brightly colored ; cotyledons 2.

Genera 9, species ca. 100 (1 genus, 1 species in the flora ) : primarily tropical to warm temperate regions , North Americ, Central America, South America, Africa, Australia.[1]

Genus Zamia

Stems often branched, subterranean to aboveground. Leaves broadly oblong-elliptic; leaflets entire to coarsely dentate , without midribs , venation dichotomous but appearing parallel. Cones distinctly peduncled. Pollen cones more slender than seed cones. x = 8.

Species ca. 30: subtropics and tropics, North America, Mexico, West Indies, Central America, South America.[2]

Physical Description

Species Zamia integrifolia

Stem subterranean , or leaf-bearing apex exposed. Leaves 2--10 dm; petiole unarmed ; leaflets 6--17 cm × 2--18 mm, linear , often twisted, very stiff, dark glossy green, 7--23-veined; margins often revolute , entire or with small teeth to slight denticulations near apex. Pollen cones generally 2--5 per plant, narrowly cylindric , 5--16 cm, tapering slightly at apex. Seed cones cylindric-ellipsoid, 5--19 cm, blunt at apex; ovules 2 per sporophyll. Seeds drupelike, oblong to ovoid , somewhat angular, 1.5--2 cm, outer coat bright orange. 2 n = 16.Period of receptivity and maturation of seeds December--March. [source]

Controversy has long existed over the classification of Zamia in Florida. Recent researchers, however, have concluded that only one species is present in the flora . The several binomials applied to our Zamia reflect variability in plant vigor, leaf shape , leaflet width, number of marginal teeth and veins per leaflet, and geographic distribution. Forms with wide leaflets---" Zamia umbrosa "---are restricted to coastal hammocks of northeastern Florida and southeastern Georgia and appear to be quite distinct from plants of the remainder of Florida--- Z. integrifolia and " Z. floridana." Especially robust forms have been described as " Zamia silvicola." Studies by D. B . Ward (n.d.) indicate that these features have a genetic basis, but formal recognition of these different phases as species does not lead to better understanding of the complex . The variants in Florida may have originated from introductions of divergent forms of Zamia from elsewhere. The starchy stems, after treatment to remove a poisonous principle, were a significant part of aboriginal diets , and the plants were presumably dispersed by aborigines. [source]

Zamia angustifolia Jacquin, a species thought to be restricted to the Bahamas and eastern Cuba, was reported in southern Florida by J. K . Small (1933). No voucher specimens were cited or are known to exist. Small also reported Zamia pumila Linnaeus from Florida, although erroneously. [source]

Flowers: Flower Color: inconspicuous, none


Size: 36-48" tall.


Hammocks , pine-oak woodlands, scrub , and shell mounds; 0--30 m (Ref. 111029).

Biome: Terrestrial [3].

Ecology: Habitats of Z. integrifolia vary from open coastal areas and sand dunes to pinelands and closed canopy oak hammocks to tropical forest . This cycad is most commonly found in soil over limestone and in sand near sea level or in dry pinelands subjected to periodic wildfires.[3].

List of Habitats:


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Culture: Space 3-6" apart.

Soil: Minimum pH: 6.1 • Maximum pH: 7.8

Sunlight: Sun Exposure: Full sun to partial shade.

Temperature: Cold Hardiness: 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11. (map)


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Zamia floridanaZamia floridana A. de Candolle • Zamia mediaZamia silvicolaZamia silvicola Small • Zamia tenuisZamia umbrosaZamia umbrosa Small


Name Status: Accepted Name .

Last scrutiny: 2004

Similar Species

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Members of the genus Zamia

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 29 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

Z. acuminata (Nicaragua Palm) · Z. amplifolia (Zamia) · Z. angustifolia (Zamia) · Z. dressleri (Zamia) · Z. encephalartoides (Zamia) · Z. fairchildiana (Palma De Pegamento) · Z. fischeri (Cycad) · Z. floridana 'Auero-variegated' (Coontie) · Z. floridanus (Coontie) · Z. furfuracea (Cardboard Palm) · Z. herrerae (Zamia) · Z. inermis (Cycad) · Z. integrifolia (Coontie) · Z. loddigesii (Zamia) · Z. manicata (Zamia) · Z. poeppigiana (Zamia) · Z. polymorpha (Zamia) · Z. portoricensis (Zamia) · Z. prasina (Zamia) · Z. pseudomonticola (Zamia) · Z. pseudoparasitica (Zamia) · Z. pumila (Arrow-Root) · Z. skinneri (Zamia) · Z. soconuscensis (Zamia) · Z. spartea (Zamia) · Z. standleyi (Camotillo) · Z. vasquezii (Cycad) · Z. vazquezii (Little Chamal (N?h.chamalillo)) · Z. verschaffeltii (Zamia)

More Info

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Further Reading

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  1. Garrie P. Landry "Zamiaceae". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
  2. "Zamia". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
  3. Stevenson, D.W. 2010. Zamia integrifolia. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. <>. Downloaded on 05 February 2012. [back]
Last Revised: 1/31/2015