Chlorophytum malayense

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Chlorophytum malayense


Leaves 3-10, sublinear or indistinctly petioled and with a lanceolate lamina, channelled towards the base, with a rather prominent midrib, suberect, glabrous, (10-)25-60 by (0.5-)l-5(-10) cm, never forming fibrous sheaths round the base of the plant. Ovary c. 1.5-1 mm long, obovoid or globose; Capsule globose, strongly emarginate and very deeply 3-lobed, c. 5-8 mm ø.


Asia-Tropical: Malaya (Peninsular Malaysia present); Thailand (Thailand present), Perak present, Perlis present
Indo-China, Thailand and Malesia: Malay Peninsula (Perak and Perlis).


Garrett (in sched.) recorded that the plant is night-flowering in Thailand.
Ridley (1925) gave the new name C. malayense to what he had previously identified as C. orchidastrum Lindl. However, he gave no characters by which these species could be separated.
In the neighbouring territories of Thailand and Indo-China Charoenphol (1973) and Gagnep ain (1934) have continued to recognize C. orchidastrum, but I am following Panigrahi (1975) who considers that C. orchidastrum sensu stricto is confined to Africa, that the Indian material should be referred to C. nimmonii and C. glaucum, and that the SE. Asian material is C. malayense. Our species can, according to Panigrahi, be recognized inter alia by drying greenish brown or glaucous, in the leaves not being distinctly petioled and 3-5 cm broad, in the scape being up to 50 cm long and shorter than the leaves and in the bracts being up to 9 cm long. Few collections have been made of C. malayense and further field work is needed to confirm its status.
C. longissimum Ridl. () was described from Trang, Peninsular Thailand, close to the Malesian border. It closely resembles C. malayense. Charoenphol distinguished these species on whether the inflorescence is erect and sometimes branched (C. malayense) or trailing on the ground and never branched (C. longissimum). The type of C. longissimum has not been seen, but specimens at Kew identified as such, and agreeing with the type description, are possibly sufficiently characterized by these inflorescence characters to retain it as a distinct taxon. Whether the differences are sufficient for specific rank must be left to future examination; it is provisionally kept distinct. It was not discussed by Panigrahi.


Gagnep. 1934 – In: Fl. Gen. I.-C.: 806
Panigrahi 1975 – In: Kew Bull.: 565
Charoenphol 1973 – In: Thai For. Bull.: 67
Ridl. 1924 – In: Fl. Mal. Pen.: 327