Aralidium pinnatifidum (Jungh. & de Vriese) Miq.

Aralidium pinnatifidum (Jungh. & de Vriese) Miq.





Vernacular Names

Malaysia Balai, sebalai, hempedu buaya (Peninsular).
Brunei Daun tutchol antu (Iban).
Indonesia Kayu attarodan (Sumatra, Batak), segentut (Gayo), medung (General).
Thailand Khot nok kuut (Phangnga), phrom-makhot (Nakhon Si Thammarat, Trang), phapuu nga (Yala).

Geographical Distributions

A. pinnatifidum is distributed in peninsular Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Sumatra and Borneo.


A. pinnatifidum is a small dioecious tree that can reach up to 10 m tall but it rarely grows up to 20 m tall, with the bole up to 25 cm in diametre. The buds are enclosed in long, shedding leaf bases.

The leaves are spirally arranged and pinnately incised, frequently as deep as to the midrib, with oblong, acuminate lobes and decurrent on the midrib. Occasionally, the blade is entire and broadly ovate, about 30 cm long and hairless. The petiole is 5-12 cm long with clasping stem. Stipules are absent. The inflorescence is a terminal or axillary panicle, up to 50 cm long, pendulous and many-flowered.

The flowers are small, unisexual, 5-merous, creamy or red-tinged and fragrant. The pedicel is articulated. The sepals and petals are densely hairy. The petals are imbricate. The male flowers are with persistent petals, 5 stamens and rudimentary ovary, while the female flowers are with caducous petals, 5 staminodes, an inferior, 1-celled ovary and 3-4 styles.

The fruit is drupe-like, usually obliquely ellipsoid, up to 4.5 cm long, purplish or black and juicy when ripe. It is 1-seeded.

The seed is broadly ellipsoid, up to 2.5 cm long and with deep ruminations at the surface.

Ecology / Cultivation

A. pinnatifidum occurs frequently in primary rainforests, but is also commonly found in open bamboo forests and secondary forest regrowth, up to 1250 m altitude and up to 1800 m in Borneo.

Line Drawing / Photograph



  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.12(3): Medicinal and poisonous plants 3.