Fabaceae, Eperua falcata, Bootlace tree
Endemic to the humid, lowland forests of Guyana, northern S America, E. falcata remains largely unknown outside its place of origin. The tree can make a giant, robust forest tree, with a massive spreading canopy. Flower clusters dangle at the end of long, pendant stems, which hang down in abundance, forming a fringe below the canopy. Each inflorescence forms a fairly incredible, deep mauve-pink, woody pod containing a single seed. The pod is reminiscent in shape to a machete blade, or even more accurately, a scimitar. The pods explode upon opening, flinging their seed up to 100 feet.
The tree was considered to be the most beautiful flowering legume by the renowned Brazilian botanist Dr. Adolpho Ducke.