Hypoxis aurea Lour.

Hypoxis aurea Lour.





Vernacular Names

Philippines Kitkitli (Igorot).
Vietnam H[aj] tr[aa]m.

Geographical Distributions

H. aurea occurs in Pakistan, India, Indo-China, southern China, Taiwan, Japan, Thailand and the Malaysian region (Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Flores, the Philippines, Sulawesi and New Guinea).


H. aurea is a small perennial herb up to 30 cm tall and with spherical to elongated rhizome.

The leaves are in a radical rosette, linear, measuring 4-30 cm x 1-5 mm and hairy.

The inflorescence is with a 4-12 cm long slender peduncle, leafless or with a single sheathing leaf, hairy and 1- to 2-flowered. The bracts are setaceous. The flowers are bisexual, 3-merous and short stalked. There are 6 petals, free, nearly equal, oblong to elliptical-lance-shaped, 5-7 mm long, spreading, villous outside and bright yellow. There are 6 stamens inserted at the base of the perianth segments and with arrowhead-shaped anthers. The ovary is inferior, 3-celled, villous, with short but robust style and 3 decurrent stigmas.

The fruit is an ellipsoid to club-shaped capsule about 7 mm long and many-seeded. The seeds are spherical, crustaceous, covered with warty protuberances and with black testa.

Ecology / Cultivation

H. aurea is found in dry, sunny localities, often in grasslands, at 900-2300 m altitude, scattered, but locally common.

Line Drawing / Photograph



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