Areca jugahpunya

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Areca (ah-REHK-ah)
jugahpunya (joo-gah-POON-yah)
Semengoh, Sarawak, Malaysia. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Areca (ah-REHK-ah)
jugahpunya (joo-gah-POON-yah)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary & clustering, acaulescent.
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Borneo, Sarawak, 7th Division, known only from the type collection (see above).
Semengoh, Sarawak, Malaysia. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Cited as growing near river banks. (J. Dransfield, The genus Areca (Palmae: Arecoideae) in Borneo. 1984)/Palmweb.


Acaulescent undergrowth palm, stem ? solitary or ? clustered, about 6 cm in diam. (no further details available). Leaf sheath greenish yellow when fresh, drying pale brown, about 30 cm long, split to about 20 cm above the insertion opposite the petiole, the abaxial surface bearing scattered chestnut brown scales; ligule apparently not present. Petiole present but of unknown length, about 1.5 cm in diam. at base, adaxially channelled, abaxially rounded; whole leaf described as 2.5 m long; total number of pinnae not known but apparently few and very broad; penultimate leaflet 75 x 8 cm, somewhat sigmoid, 4-costate, acuminate in a driptip to 10 cm long; leaflets of apical pair very broad, 65 x 25 cm, 15-costate, the apical margin 15 cm wide with lobes to 5 cm corresponding to the adaxial folds, these further split along adaxial folds to 2 cm; abaxial lamina surface conspicuously striate when dry, paler than adaxial, both surfaces with scattered minute brown scales. Inflorescence infrafoliar, erect; prophyll not available; peduncle very short, about 2 x 2 cm just above the clasping base, bearing about 20 stiff erect rachillae, those at the base forking near the insertion, to 24 x 0.7 cm, deep scarlet when fresh, proximally bearing 2-3 triads about 3 cm distant distally bearing staminate flowers solitary or in pairs about 1-5 cm distant, all ± uniseriate on one side of the rachilla. Staminate flowers green in bud, becoming white after anthesis, relatively very large (perhaps the largest in the genus), about 18 mm long; calyx about 3.5 mm long, tubular above a short solid base, with 3 low triangular lobes with minutely ciliate margins; petals 3, ± oblong, about 15 x 4 mm, connate in the basal 5 mm, the tips blunt triangular; stamens 6, the filaments inserted on the corolla about 2 mm above the base; anthers ± medifixed, about 9 x 1 mm, pistillode absent. Pistillate flower bud about 15 x 7 mm, ± ovoid, subtrigonous; sepals 3, imbricate, cucullate, connate only at the very base, the outermost to 15 x 7 mm, the innermost to 11 x 6 mm; petals 3, free, valvate above, imbricate below, about 9 x 3 mm; staminodes apparently absent; ovary very immature in available specimen. Immature fruit fusiform, 5.5 x 1 cm, tipped by massive stigmatic remains. (J. Dransfield, The genus Areca (Palmae: Arecoideae) in Borneo. 1984)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

A. jugahpunya is an extraordinary species. The inflorescence is remarkably robust and the staminate flowers perhaps larger than in any other species of Areca; furthermore the petals of the staminate flower are conspicuously con- nate at the base. The fruit, even in an immature state is massive. These features, together with the acaulescent habit, must lend a very strange aspect to the palm in the field. Despite its anomalous features, the uniseriate arrangement of the staminate flowers indicates a position within section Arecella, where it is probably closest to a new taxon from northern Sumatra and Trengganu. (J. Dransfield, The genus Areca (Palmae: Arecoideae) in Borneo. 1984)/Palmweb.


Cold Hardiness Zone: 10a

Comments and Curiosities

Etymology: This species (jugahpunya-belonging to Jugah, in Malay) is named for Jugah anak Kudi, well known plant collector of the Forest Department, Sarawak, who assisted in collecting the type, and who has accompanied me on many field trips, enlivening them with wit and great botanical knowledge. (J. Dransfield, The genus Areca (Palmae: Arecoideae) in Borneo. 1984)/Palmweb.

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

Special thanks to Geoff Stein, (Palmbob) for his hundreds of photos.

Special thanks to, Dr. John Dransfield, Dr. Bill Baker & team, for their volumes of information and photos.

Glossary of Palm Terms; Based on the glossary in Dransfield, J., N.W. Uhl, C.B. Asmussen-Lange, W.J. Baker, M.M. Harley & C.E. Lewis. 2008. Genera Palmarum - Evolution and Classification of the Palms. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. All images copyright of the artists and photographers (see images for credits).

J. Dransfield, The genus Areca (Palmae: Arecoideae) in Borneo. 1984

Many Special Thanks to Ed Vaile for his long hours of tireless editing and numerous contributions.

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