Articles

Melastoma sanguineum Sims

Melastoma sanguineum Sims

Family

Melastomataceae

Synonyms

M. decemfidum Roxb. ex Jack.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Sendudok, sendudok gajah (Peninsular).
Cambodia Prea, kenchea das.
Thailand Mang khre khon, mang khre chaang, bre chaang (Peninsular).
Vietnam mua b[af].

Geographical Distributions

Melastoma sanguineum is distributed from Burma (Myanmar), Thailand, southern China, Indo-China to Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo, the Lesser Sunda Islands and the Moluccas.

Description

M. sanguineum is a shrub or small tree that can reach up to measure 10 m tall. The young branches are quadrangular, covered with adpressed or spreading, red to brown scales or bristles while its bark is brown or grey in colour.

The leaves are lance-shaped or elliptical, seldom ovate in shape, with a size of measuring 3-17 cm x 1-6 cm, rounded or acute base, acute or acuminate apex, hairless or hairy, with 5- or 7-veined and they are pale green or tinged red beneath. The cyme is terminal, with 3-5-flowered or solitary flowers.

The flowers are normally 5-merous, bell-shaped hypanthium, with a size of measuring about  7-15 mm x 5-14 mm and covered with reddish bristles. The sepals are lance-shaped or triangular and with intersepalar emergences while the petals are wedge-shaped-obovate, with a size of measure 33-46 mm x 22-33 mm and violet. The stamens are dimorphic, violet anther of outer stamens, connective prolonged and with measuring 8-12 mm long filaments while the anther of inner stamens are yellow in colour, connective but not prolonged and with measuring 5-8 mm long filaments. The ovary is slightly shorter than hypanthium and crowned by golden bristles.

The capsule is fleshy, with a size of measuring  8-19 mm x 8-18 mm, irregularly longitudinally opened at maturity and exposes the solid yellow pulp with orange seeds.

 

Ecology / Cultivation

M. sanguineum is found in disturbed forest, along streams and roads, in open locations and savanna from sea-level up to 2300 m altitude.

 

Line Drawing / Photograph

Melastoma_sanguineum

References

    1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12 (2): Medicinal and poisonous plants 2.