Cassia Bakeriana Craib, Kew Bull.: 45 (1911)
Species name referring to 'John Gilbert Baker' [1834-1920], a curator at Kew Herbarium from 1866
Cassia bakerana Craib [Spelling variant]
Shrub to small tree, all parts hairy. Stipules present. Leaves alternate, compound, with 5-7 pairs
of small leaflets with rounded tips. Flowers large, on a 6 cm long stalk, pink-purple, with yellow
stamens, ovary and styles. The stamens are swollen in the middle. The fruits are long up to 40 cm,
elongate pods filled with 30-40 disc like seeds separated by spongy layers.
Tree up to 10 m high; all young parts densely pubescent. Leaves with 5-7 pairs of
leaflets; stipules narrow-lanceolate, pointed towards both ends, attached in the middle;
petiole 2-4 cm long, light brownish pubescent as the 15-40 cm long rachis. Leaflets
oblong to oblanceolate, 6-8 by 1.5-3 cm, rounded at both ends; apex with a small
mucro, both sides more or less densely velvety hairy; petiolule 2 mm. Racemes lateral,
5-12 cm long, 1-few together; main axis yellowish pubescent; bracts lanceolate, apex
long-pointed, hairy on both sides, 7-12 by 3 mm at base; bracteoles similar but only
1/3 the length. Flowers large (the largest flowers of any Cassia in the region), on a 6 cm
long, thinly pubescent pedicel, more densely hairy in a ring just below the calyx. Sepals
ovate-lanceolate with acute apex, 9-12 by 2-3 mm, hairy on both sides. Petals ovate
lanceolate, pinkish, 3.5-4.5 by 1-2.5 cm, claw narrow, c. 5 mm long. Stamens: 3 long
with filaments 3.5-5 cm, swollen in the middle, anthers 5 mm long, ovoid, opening by
apical and basal slits; 4 with filaments half the length but with anthers nearly twice as
long, also opening by slits; reduced stamens 3, small, with filaments 1-1.5 cm long and
very small anthers. Ovary whitish pubescent, recurved, c. 4 cm long, on a 1-1.5 cm
long stipe; stigma subapical, punctifomi. Pods pendulous, terete, grey to brownish velvety
pubescent, 30-40 by 1-1.5 cm diam. Seeds 30-40, separated by spongy septa. [from Flora Malesiana]
Occurring from (200-)500-1500 m altitude, originally in seasonal forests.
Endemic to Burma and Thailand. Introduced as ornamental in e.g.
West Malaysia and New Guinea, also elsewhere, but evidently not common.