Pinanga rupestris

From Palmpedia - Palm Grower's Guide
Jump to: navigation, search
Pinanga (pih-NAHN-gah)
rupestris (roo-PEHS-tris)
Photo: La Société Palmophile Francophone
Scientific Classification
Genus: Pinanga (pih-NAHN-gah)
rupestris (roo-PEHS-tris)
None set.
Native Continent
Habit: Clustering
Leaf type: Entire bifid.
Survivability index
Common names

Habitat and Distribution

Borneo. This remarkable little 'pinang' is found only on the great sandstone cliffs and
Bako National Park, Sarawak, Malaysia. Photo by Patrick Blanc
boulders of Bako National Park. It is by no means abundant, but is very distinctive. No fruits have been found although dead inflorescences can be seen on herbarium specimens and in the field. How the palm is dispersed to crevices in vertical cliffs is a mystery. (J. Dransfield. 1991)/Palmweb.


Diminutive clustering palmlet, erect or more usually pendulous from crevices in sandstone rock faces. Stems rarely exceeding 60 cm long, usually much less, about 4-6 mm in diam., conspicuously marked with nodal scars, inter- nodes 1-3 cm, surface with scattered brown scales, stem base producing aerial roots and dense clusters of sucker shoots, the stem also frequently producing bulbil-like shoots from the middle of the distal internodes. Crown of about 6 leaves, the sheaths forming an elongate crownshaft; leaf sheaths about 80 x 7 mm, striate on drying, covered in scattered dull brown scales, distally with a rapidly disintegrating laciniate ocrea to 16 mm; petiole of leaves of mature stems about 8-17 cm, about 3 mm in diam., ± triangular in cross section, bearing scattered scales when fresh; blade dull brown or greenish brown when dry, narrow, entire, bifid, to 50 cm long, gradually widening from the base to 6 cm near the tip, usually shorter and narrower, split to 7.5 cm, the two halves with about 6 shallow lobes to 7 mm deep; adaxial surface minutely punctate, abaxial surface bearing inconspicuous thin grey indumentum. Inflorescence unbranched, pendulous, 6 cm long; prophyll about 6 x 1.4 cm; peduncle very short, not exceeding about 7 mm; rachilla surface hairy; triads strictly distichous, borne in a plane radial to the stem, each subtended by a low rachilla bract to 1 mm high. Staminate flowers ± triangular ovate in outline, laterally flattened or curved by close packing; calyx irregularly 3-lobed, the lobes 1-2 mm high; petals cream-coloured, fleshy, irregular, two about 6.5 x 3 mm, the third about 6.5 x 4.5 mm; stamens 7-8, filaments about 1 x 0.2 mm, anthers about 2 x 0.6 mm, with broad connectives. Pollen grains monosulcate, ellipsoid in apertural view; long axis (31-) 33.3 (-36) µ/m, short axis (24 -) 26.2 (-30) µ/m, wall thickness about 2 ,im; sulcus membrane not observed, sulcus somewhat longer than long axis; exine intectate, clavate, the larger clavae interspersed with smaller diameter, shorter clavae, clavae not modified at sulcus margin. Pistillate flower very low; calyx tubular, ± striate, about 0.8 mm high, very shallowly 3-lobed; petals imbricate, ovate, about 0.8 mm long, the margins sparsely ciliate; staminodes lacking; ovary about 0.8 mm in diam., tipped with an irregularly lobed stigma. Fruit not known. (J. Dransfield. 1991)/Palmweb. Editing by edric.

P. rupestris, although superficially very different, seems to me to be related to the rheophyte, P. rivularis Becc., from neighbouring Brunei and the 4th and 5th Divisions of Sarawak. Both species are diminutive, and have internodal branching and simple, hairy inflorescence axes bearing gamosepalous pistillate flowers; the leaves of P. rivularis are, however, very finely pinnate as befits a rheophyte. (J. Dransfield. 1991)/Palmweb.


Comments and Curiosities

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).

Dransfield, J. 1991. Notes on Pinanga (Palmae) in Sarawak. Kew Bulletin, Vol. 46, No. 4, pp. 691-698.

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

Back to Palm Encyclopedia

Retrieved from ""