Diospyros elliptifolia Merr., Philip. J. Sci. 30 (1926)
Latin for 'with elliptic leaves'.
Diospyros elliptifolia forma kinabaluensis Bakh.
Diospyros kinabaluensis (Bakh.) Kosterm.
Understorey tree up to 18 m tall and 24 cm dbh. Stipules absent. Leaves
alternate, simple, penni-veined, glabrous. Flowers ca. 3 mm in diameter, white,
with corolla tube, placed in bundles or solitary in leaf axils. Fruits ca. 19 mm
long, green-yellow, fleshy berry.
Tree to 18 m tall and 24 cm diameter. Twigs not tending to dry black. Leaves chartaceous, glabrous,
not subglaucous below; obovate, elliptic or oblong, 8-17(-32) x 4-9.5(-12) cm, base attenuate, apex
shortly acuminate; midrib grooved above, with prominently raised rims, especially toward base, and
often conspicuously black against a light greenish brown leaf under surface; lateral veins prominent
below, 5-10 pairs, arching and diminishing toward leaf margin; intercostal venation prominulous on
both sides, reticulate, or sometimes invisible; petiole very short, 0.2-0.5 cm long, leaf almost
subsessile because of the attenuate base. Male inflorescences c. 0.3 cm long, each bearing up to 3
flowers. Male flowers with calyx divided into 4 or 5 valvate triangular lobes; corolla c. 0.7 cm long,
urceolate. Female inflorescences 0.1-0.5 cm long, each bearing usually solitary flower. Female flowers
with calyx deeply divided into 4-5 leafy valvate lobes of 0.7-1 x 0.5-1.5 cm. Fruits solitary,
subsessile, globose, 1.5-3 cm diameter, often with a pointed apical protuberance, drying shining black,
smooth, finely hairy, symmetric. Fruit calyx not or slightly accrescent; lobes leafy coriaceous,
veined, erect, to c. 1.5 x 1.5 cm, sides expanded and slightly plicate. [from Tree Flora of Sabah
In undisturbed mixed dipterocarp forests up to 800 m altitude. Mostly in
swamps and alluvial sites, but also on hillsides and ridges. Also found on poor sandy to
Sumatra, Borneo, Philippines.
Borneo: Kayu balleh, Kayu malam.