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Deeringia amaranthoides (Lamk) Merr.

Deeringia amaranthoides (Lamk) Merr.

Family

Amaranthaceae

Synonyms

Achyranthes amaranthoides Lamk, Deeringia celosoides R.Br., Deerin­gia baccata (Retz.) Moq.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia       

Bajam besar, bajam pohon.

Indonesia     

Bayam besar (Malay), pancaluhur (Sundanese), bayem luur (Balinese).

Philippines    

Ditiran, sili-silihan (Tagalog), aribug­bug (Iloko).

Thailand       

Khruea yaang (North-east­ern), phaahom pia a (Peninsular).

Vietnam        

D[eef]n leo.

Geographical Distributions

Deeringia ama­ranthoides occurs from India to China, throughout Malaysia to Australia; there are no records in Borneo or the Moluccas.

Description

Deeringia ama­ranthoides is a perennial, climbing or clamber­ing shrub, often with long and pendulous branches that are about 2-6(-15) m long. The higher part of stem is slightly angular, with finely appressed hairs when young, becoming terete and hairless when old.

The leaves are arranged alternate, ovate to oblong-sublanceolate, measure 4-15 cm x 2-8 cm, acute at base, obtuse, rounded or subtruncate and often unequal at apex. The leaves taper towards the apex or with acuminate, long mucro, often caduceus where both surfaces are thinly patently hairy but later becoming hairless and with midrib distinct beneath.

The petiole is 1-6 cm long. The inflorescence is an ax­illary or terminal raceme, very often divaricately branched and 5-28(-35) cm long. The highest racemes are usually collected in a panicle terminal that is 15-75 cm long. They are rather dense or lax in the lower part. The peduncle is absent or up to 8 cm long. The bracts are 1.5 mm long, nar­rowly triangular and very acute.

The flow­ers are small measuring 1 mm long, solitary, sometimes clustered, malodor­ous, subtended by 2 bracteoles, ovate and acute. The pedicel is 0.7-2 mm long. There are 5 tepals, oval-­oblong, measuring 1.5-2.5 mm long, obtuse or rounded, pale green, with white margin, often tinged red in fruit and re­flexed. There are 5 stamens of which the filaments at the base are united into a cup. The anthers are 2-celled. The ovary is superior, ovoid, with short funicle, 3 stigmas, greenish-white, 1-1.5 mm long and recurves in the fruit.

The fruit is a berry, spherical-obovoid, 4-7 mm in di­ametre, indehiscent, bright red and falls out of the persistent perianth when ripens. There are (1-)5(-9) seeds, which are circular with emarginate base, 1-1.3 mm in diam­etre, almost smooth and brownish-black. Seedling is with epigeal germination.

Ecology / Cultivation

Deeringia amaranthoides occurs in teak for­ests, open mixed forests, secondary forests and their borders, tall brushwoods, hedges, mainly in some­what drier regions, often on calcareous soils, from sea level up to 1500 m altitude.

Line Drawing / Photograph

Deeringia_amaranthoides

References

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

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