Family: Apocynaceae

Latin name: Couma macrocarpa

Vernacular name: Leche huayo, leche caspi

Ethnobotany
The sticky white latex is sweet and used for treating diarreah (often mixed with manioc flour) and skin ailments. The latex is also used for patching canoes and other sealing needs. This tree was heavily exploited in the past because the latex was exported for use in plastics, wiring, golf balls, and rubber. The fruits are sweet, chewy and milky in taste. The fruit pulp is gummy and a favorite treat for children.

Agroforestry
This is an upland species that slowly increases in size as it ages. Space considerations are important when cultivating this tree. It will attract primates to gardens. The fruits are always popular in markets, but perish rapidly when ripe. Young boys are often sent up the larger trees to harvest the ripest fruits. The trees can produce for decades. Because of their size, they should be placed on the edges of fields.

The sweet sticky fruits are a favorite for primates and people.

The sweet sticky fruits are a favorite for primates and people.

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