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Pakistan | Family List | Euphorbiaceae | Mallotus

Mallotus philippensis (Lam.) Muell. Arg.(sphalmate philippinensis, corr. Merr.) in, Linnaea. 34(1): 196. 1865. in DC., Prodr. 15(2): 980.1866; Hook. f., Fl. Brit. Ind. 5: 442. 1887; Pax in Engl., Pflanzenreich 4. 147. 7: 184. 1914; Parker, For. Fl. Punj. 457. 1918; Stewart, Ann. Cat. Vasc. Pl. W. Pak. & Kashm. 455. 1972.

Vern.: ‘Kamila’.


  • Croton philippense Lam.
  • Echinus philippinensis Baill.
  • Rottlera tinctoria Roxb.

    A shrub or small evergreen tree 3-6 m high in Pakistan, elsewhere up to 20 m. Stems fluted in age. Bark rough, dark grey, thin. Wood white. Young shoots, petioles, leaves and inflorescences fulvous- to ferruginous-pubescent. Leaves alternate or subopposite. Petioles 1-4 (-7) cm long. Leaf-blades ovate to ovate-lanceolate, 5-15 x 2-9 cm, acute or subacutely shortly acuminate, subentire, cuneate, rounded or subtruncate at the base, triplinerved from the base, lateral nerves 3-8 pairs, tertiary nerves ± parallel, glabrous above, with a pair of large glands at the base, sparingly pubescent and minutely reddish-gland-dotted beneath, glaucous. Stipules minute, fugacious. Male inflorescences terminal, spicate or racemose, often clustered and appearing as if paniculate, up to 7 cm long, dense-flowered; bracts triangular, 1 mm long, persistent. Male flowers subsessile, or with pedicels 1 mm long; calyx-lobes ovate-lanceolate to lanceolate, 3 x 1-1.5 mm, acute, pubescent, glandular; stamens c. 30, 3 mm long, anthers 1 mm long, with a few apical glands; disc minute, central. Female inflorescences ± as in the ♂, but shorter and less crowded. Female flowers sessile or subsessile; calyx-lobes 3-5, triangular-ovate, 1.5 mm long, closely adpressed to the ovary, subpersistent, otherwise as in the ♂; ovary subglobose, c. 1 mm diam., pubescent and densely red-glandular; styles 2-3 mm long, plumose, green. Fruit trilobite-subglobose, occasionally quadrilobate, 8-10 x 6-7 mm, ± smooth, densely covered with crimson granular glands, which rub off, loculicidally dehiscent. Seeds subglobose, c. 4 mm diam., ± smooth, black.

    Fl. Per.: Feb: Nov. Fr. Per.: Mar: May.

    Holotype: Philippines, Sonnerat s.n. (P-LA!).

    Distribution: Widespread from W. Himalaya and Sri Lanka to Taiwan and throughout S.E. Asia and Malesia to E. Australia and Melanesia: 2000 - 5000'/ 610-1525 m.

    Common and often gregarious on stony slopes and rocky hillsides with sand and thorn scrub; little touched by cattle and goats. The red powder on the fruits can be used for dyeing silk and wool, and also as an antiseptic and anthelminthic.


    Related Objects  
  • Illustration (M. Rafiq)
  • Illustration

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