Adenia macrophylla (Blume) Koord., Exkurs.-Fl. Java 2: 637 (1912)

Latin for 'long or large leaved'.

Adenia borneensis Hallier f.
Adenia borneensis var. microcarpa Hallier f.
Adenia clementis Merr.
Adenia grandifolia Ridl.
Adenia longipedunculata Merr.
Adenia quintuplinervia Hallier f.
Modecca macrophylla Blume

Slender woody vine, climbing with tendrils borne from flower-bearing branches, reaching up to 25m height with support. Typically spreading widely amongst tree crowns, but main plant usually difficult to spot, unless when flowering. Leaves leathery, 8-11cm long, glossy dark green above, paler green below, with 2 spathulate glands at base adjoining leaf stalk. Plant is monoecious, producing unisexual flowers on same individual. Flowering branches have only male or female flowers, with male flowers produced in much larger proportion. Flowers of both sexes yellowish-green, tubular, in few-flowered hanging clusters, small and inconspicuous, less than 1cm across. Fruits dehiscent 3-valved capsules produced from female flowers, glossy bright red, spindle-shaped, 5cm long, splitting from apex to reveal 15-40 seeds each. Seeds blackish when mature, round, with pitted testa (seed coat), enclosed in white fleshy aril, suspended from inner fruit wall by pinkish threads.

Native to forests and marginal forest thickets, usually on open well exposed sites. Caterpillar Food Plant (Associated with: Cethosia hypsea). Seeds dispersed explosively.

Ornamental. Known to contain toxic sap, which is poisonous if ingested by vetebrates, and may cause skin irritation in sensitive individuals. A poultice of the leaves is applied in Peninsular Malaysia to headache, and a lotion made from the roots is used against ringworm. In Sumatra, the inner bark has been used for spinning threads for fishing tackle.

Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Borneo.

Local names