Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham.) Verdc.

Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham.) Verdc.




Cryphaea erecta Buch.-Ham., Chloranthus officinalis Blume, Chloranthus elatior Link.

Vernacular Names


Dikut-dikut, langut-Iangut (Sarawak), sambau paya (Peninsular).


Keras tulang (Malay), uyah-uyahan (Javanese), harostulang (Sumatra).


Hom kai (Northern), kraduk kai (Central).


Barau-barau (Luzon), tul-an hinbad (Samar), tung­gao (Tagbanua).


Kbâ:k dâmréi.

Geographical Distributions

Chloranthus erec­tus is found in continental Asia from Nepal to Yunnan and the Andaman Islands, and through­out the Malaysian region as far as New Guinea.


Chloranthus erec­tus is a smooth, aromatic, slightly woody herb or small shrub that can reach up to 3 m tall. The nodes are swollen and sometimes purplish.

The leaves are arranged decussately opposite. The petiole is 1-1.5 cm long while the stipules are small and awl-shaped. The blade is oblong-lance-shaped to elliptical or ovate-oblong, measuring 8-29 cm x 3-13 cm, with wedge-shaped base, shallowly glandular-serrate margin, with long acuminate apex, penninerved, bright green and glossy above.

The inflorescence is terminal where the peduncled panicle consists of 5-13 spikes which are 2.5-5 cm long. The bracts are sheath, ovate and acute. The flowers are much reduced, without perianth and bisexual. The male part is a 3-lobed organ adnate to the upper half of the ovary and with fused stamens. It is 1.2-1.6 mm long and with 3 anthers. The medi­an one is 2-locellate while the lateral ones is 1-locellate which is yellow, greenish-white or violet-white. The female part is composed of a 1-locular ovary with a single ovule. It is partly enclosed by the male part, with subses­sile stigma and truncate.

The fruit is a drupe, nearly globular or ellip­soid, measures 5-7 mm in diametre, fleshy, white-cream or rarely tinged violet or pinkish and glossy.

The seed is also nearly globular, yellow-white, minutely apiculate, narrow be­low, and surrounded by a thin and fibrous endocarp. The testa is with lignified endotestal palisade cells.

Ecology / Cultivation

In the wild, Chloranthus erec­tus grows in prima­ry and secondary tropical forests at (20) 50-1450 (-2550) m altitude. At higher altitudes, it is often found in Araucaria and Nothofagus-Castanopsis forests, often on limestone. Its lowland forest habi­tats include Pandanus and palm forests, riverine forests, and boggy areas.

Line Drawing / Photograph


Read More

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  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.16: Stimulants.