Alpinia mutica Roxb.

Alpinia mutica Roxb.




Languas mutica (Roxb.) Merrill.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Chengkenam (Peninsular).
Vietnam ri[eef]ng hoa th[uw]a.

Geographical Distributions

Alpinia mutica is found around Malaysia, planted in Vietnam and India as an ornamental.


A. mutica is a rather slender herb, measuring up to 1-2 m tall where its rhizome is rather slender.

The leaves are narrowly lance-shaped, measures up to 45 cm x 5 cm, long acuminate and hairless. The petiole is measures about 2 cm long, ovoid ligule, 7-8 mm long and blunt. The panicle is a few to many-flowered, measuring up to 15 cm long, several branches and short.

The cincinni is with 3-5-flowered and absent bracts. The bracteoles are very small, oblong in shape, measures about 6 mm long, white and caduceus. The sepal is tubular, measuring 15-20 mm long, split halfway during flowering and white while the petal tube is shorter, with oblong lobes, measures 2.5-3 cm long and white. The labellum is broadly ovate, somewhat 3-lobed where the basal part is strongly concave, straight apex, bright yellow to orange with numerous red dots and veins where a dark red swells at the base at each side. The staminodes are absent. The stamen is as long as petal lobes, with white filament, tinged pink and the anther is without crest.

The orange-red capsule is an ovoid in shape, up to 2 cm in diametre and sparsely short hairs.

The seeds are numerous.

Ecology / Cultivation

A. mutica occurs in swampy localities, but is common as a garden plant in Singapore.

Line Drawing / Photograph



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