Daemonorops maculata

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maculata (mah-koo-LAH-tah)
Sabal Tapang, Sarawak, Malaysia. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Scientific Classification
Genus: Daemonorops
maculata (mah-koo-LAH-tah)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Solitary
Leaf type: Pinnate
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Daemonorops maculata is endemic to Borneo. Known from two collections in Brunei.
Keresa, Sarawak, Malaysia. Photo by Dr. John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Palmweb.
Elsewhere in Sarawak. (J. Dransfield. 1997)/Palmweb.


Slender to moderate solitary rattan palm with stems rarely longer than 5 m, usually only 2 m; stem without sheaths to about 11 mm in diam., with sheaths to 20 mm in diam., internodes about 8 cm long, sometimes much less. Sheaths bright green when fresh, bearing scattered, straight black spines to 15 mm with yellowish bases and abundant deciduous scales; knee conspicuous, the sheath pale cream-coloured above the knee; ocrea absent. Rosette leaves ecirrate, to about 1.5 m long, long-persisting, with 8-10 regularly arranged leaflets on each side of the rachis, petiole and rachis conspicuously yellow blotched. Leaves on climbing stems cirrate, to 2 m, but usually about 75 cm, petiole very short, 2-5 cm only, cirrus to 75 cm; rachis sparsely armed, bright green, conspicuously blotched with yellow; leaflets 8-10 on each side, regularly arranged, broad, hooded and abruptly narrowed at the tip, very thick in texture, the largest to about 25 × 6 cm, the basalmost 1-2 pairs very much smaller and narrower; transverse veinlets conspicuous. Inflorescences short, rarely more than 20 cm, rather congested; peduncle very spiny; prophyll about 14 × 4 cm, ± woody; partial inflorescences about 5; male rachilla about 15 × 1.5 mm, female about 25 × 3 mm, both densely covered in brown hairs. Mature fruit rounded, about 20 × 16 mm, somewhat beaked, covered in 15 vertical rows of brown scales very heavily encrusted in dragon’s blood. Seed about 14 × 10 mm; endosperm deeply ruminate. Seedling leaf not known. (J. Dransfield. 1997)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

D. maculata appears to be confined to kerangas forest in the lowlands; it may be distinguished from D. didymophylla by the solitary habit, very short petiole, regular leaflets with very thick texture and abundant transverse veinlets, the basalmost leaflets being much shorter than the rest, and the peculiar blotches along the rachis. (J. Dransfield. 1997)/Palmweb.


Comments and Curiosities

Etymology: Blotched.

Uses: Not known with certainty but this must be one of the richest producers of dragon’s blood. (J. Dransfield. 1997)/Palmweb.

External Links


Phonetic spelling of Latin names by edric.

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

Special thanks to Palmweb.org, 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).

Dransfield, J. 1997. The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam. Ministry of Industry and primary Resources, Brunei Darussalam.

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

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