Tabernaemontana pauciflora Blume

Tabernaemontana pauciflora Blume




Ervatamia malaccensis King & Gamble, Tabernaemontana malaccensis Hook.f., Tabernaemontana polysperma Merr., Tabernaemontana dinhensis Pitard, Tabernaemontana harmandiana Pierre ex Pitard, Tabernaemontana sralensis Pierre ex Pitard.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Lelada, susun kelapa, pokok restong.
Thailand Prik paa, mok (South-eastern).
Vietnam L[at]i tr[aa]u [is]t hoa.

Geographical Distributions

Tabernaemontana pauciflora is found in Burma (Myanmar), Thailand, Indo-China, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Sumatra, West and Central Java and Borneo.


Tabernaemontana pauciflora is a shrub or small tree, 0.5-2(-6) m tall while the stem is 2-10 cm in diametre. The leaves are elliptical to narrowly elliptical, 3-26 cm x 0.6-10 cm and 1.9-4.2 times longer than wide. The apex is acuminate or caudate while the leaf stalk is 2-7 mm long.

The inflorescence is lax, 3-10 cm x 2-5 cm, with 3-15(-20)-flowered. The flowers are sweet-scented, open during the day, pale green sepals, more or less leafy while the petal in mature bud is 14-38 mm long with a comparatively wide ovoid head for 20-30% of the length, acuminate apex or obtuse, tube is 4-8(-20) times longer than the sepal, with a size of 12.5-23(-32) mm long and twisted for 0.25-0.5 turn or not just below the anthers.

The fruit consists of 2 separate mericarps, obliquely ellipsoid or narrowly so, with 1-2 lateral and 1 adaxial ridges as line of dehiscence. It is orange or yellow, several-seeded and red aril.

Ecology / Cultivation

Tabernaemontana pauciflora is found in the forest understoreys, often on stream banks from sea-level to 600 m altitude. In Malaysia and Indonesia, it flowers and fruits throughout the year with a peak of flowering in March-May and of fruiting in September-November.

Line Drawing / Photograph



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