Aglaia subsessilis

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Aglaia subsessilis

Description

Tree up to 15 m. Outer bark thin, dark reddish-brown or white with black patch- es, scaly, with brown lenticels; inner bark reddish-brown or pale yellow, laminated; cambium pale yellow; sapwood pale purple, white or red and white; latex white. Leaves trifoliolate or imparipinnate, up to 21 cm long and 32 cm wide; petiole 3–10(–30) mm, petiole, rachis and petiolules with numerous to densely covered with hairs like those on the twigs. Inflorescence 21–26 cm long, 15–28 cm wide; peduncle 6–8.5 cm, peduncle, rachis and branches with numerous to densely packed orange- brown stellate hairs. Flowers 0.5–1.2 mm long and wide; pedicels c. 0.2–0.8(–2) mm long, pedicels and calyx with a few orange-brown stellate hairs or scales. Petals 5. Staminal tube up to 0.5 mm high, cup-shaped, the margin shallowly lobed; anthers 5, up to 0.3 mm long and wide, inserted just inside the margin and pointing towards the centre of the flower. Fruits 1 or 2, c. 6.5 cm long and 2.5 cm wide, red when young, yellow when ripe, narrowly ellipsoid, with a short stipe up to 5 mm long and a beak up to 5 mm long; the pericarp thin and leathery when dry, with 10 longitudinal ridges, along two of which the pericarp splits when dry, densely covered with compact reddish-brown stellate hairs on the outer surface. Seed 4–4.2 cm long, 1.2–1.5 cm wide, and 0.6–0.7 mm thick, ellipsoid, flattened on the raphe side, the testa with a conspicuous network of veins.

Distribution

Asia-Tropical: Borneo (Sabah present, Sarawak present)
Malesia: Borneo (Sarawak and Sabah).

Taxonomy

The fruit is narrowly ellipsoid and longitudinally ridged, and resembles that of the uncommon Bornean variant of A. simplicifolia which was treated as a separate species, A. sterculioides, by Kostermans. In both of these the pericarp splits open in herbarium specimens, although whether or not the ripe fruit dehisces should be confirmed in the field. Aglaia subsessilis is unusual in having almost sessile leaves, in which the basal pair of leaflets are small and almost round in shape. Aglaia basiphylla and A. evansensis, both of which are confined to Fiji, are the only other species of Aglaia in which subsessile leaves are found. Aglaia subsessilis resembles A. leucophylla in the pale yellowish-green colour of the leaflets when dry and A. elliptica in its indumentum.