Newsletter
Sonerila tenuifolia Blume (Melastomataceae)
by Siti Eisya Nabiha binti Damahuri & Dr. Avelinah Julius
© Avelinah Julius

In many times, botanical expeditions offer great opportunities to the keen eyes. Two species of Sonerila were found and collected during a botanical survey at the summit trail of Gunung Ledang, Johor. The two species were Sonerila griffithii C.B.Clarke and S. tenuifolia Blume. The latter had a height of up to 50 cm tall, branching and bushy with a reddish stem. This species is usually found growing under shades at banks of rocky stream, wet rocky faces or damp hill slopes. In Gunung Ledang, the species was found growing on the mossy forest floor on the ridges under the tree and uncommon as only one population was found towards the summit.

Sonerila tenuifolia is easily recognised from its erect habit and the long leaf stalk (petiole of 0.5─1.8 cm long). The leaves are narrow and elongated lanceolate with a dimension of 2─6 cm long and 0.6─1.4 cm wide. The lamina is hairy on both surfaces, and the margin is denticulate. The leaf is thinly chartaceous when dried, and this may possibly explain the origin of its Latin name; tenuis (thin) and folium (leaf), referring to the leaf character.

The species has its inflorescence terminal or axillary, and there are always three flowers per inflorescence. The non-venulose petals (7─9 × 5 mm) and stigma are pale pink while the sagittated anthers are yellowish.

Sonerila tenuifolia is so far known from Java in Indonesia, and Malaysia (POWO, 2022). In Peninsular Malaysia, it is widespread and recorded from Johor, Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, Perak and Selangor on upper hill to montane forest areas. None of the other known species from the genus in Peninsular Malaysia shared similar leaf shape as of S. tenuifolia. However, S. tenuifolia recorded from Java resembles S. celebica Bakh.f. from Sulawesi by having an erect habit and terete stem, but the latter can be differentiated from the former species by its ovate to subovate leaves, obtuse tips and rounded to subcordate base, and the ovoid to oblong anther, while the petals are venulose (Kartonegoro, 2011).

Sonerila is a group of plants that are popular among horticulturists for its ornamental foliage. They are sought-after as decorative in terrariums or simply potted due to their attractive leave shapes, colours and veins formation. As for S. tenuifolia, despite its plain-green leaves, the denticulate margin made this species a potential ornamental plant.

References

QR Code
Scan QR code for mobile experience

Other articles

Buxus rupicola Ridl.

Ms. Fatin Qurratul 'ain Binti Saberam   •   15 Dec 2022   •   1494 views

Globba fragilis S.N. Lim (Zingiberaceae)

Dr. Sam Yen Yen   •   30 Nov 2022   •   2025 views

Etlingera elatior (Jack) R.M.Sm (Zingiberaceae)

Ms. Nur Liyana Hazwani Shahdani   •   15 Nov 2022   •   2187 views

Ceriops tagal (Perr.) C.B.Rob. (Rhizophoraceae)

Ms. Munira Mohd Sazali   •   31 Oct 2022   •   2691 views

Donax canniformis (G.Forst.) K.Schum. (Marantaceae)

Ms. Nur Liyana Hazwani Shahdani   •   14 Oct 2022   •   2954 views
Get updates and an exclusive news when you sign up to our free newsletter.
Malaysia Biodiversity Information System (MyBIS)   by   Malaysia Biodiversity Centre (MBC)


Copyright © 2023, Malaysia Biodiversity Centre (MBC), Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change (NRECC). All rights reserved. DISCLAIMER - The Malaysian Government, Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change (NRECC), Malaysia Biodiversity Centre (MBC) and Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) shall not be liable for any loss or damage caused by the usage of any information obtained from this website. By entering this site, you acknowledge and agree that no portion of this site, including but not limited to names, logos, trademarks, patents, sound, graphics, charts, text, audio, video, information or images are either MyBIS property or the property permitted by third-party and shall not be used without prior written approval from the owner(s).
Best viewed using latest Mozila Firefox, Google Chrome and Internet Explorer 10 with Resolution 1024 x 768px or above. Version 2.0 / 2016
Website Citation: MyBIS (2023). Malaysia Biodiversity Information System. Published on the Internet https://www.mybis.gov.my/, Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change, Malaysia Biodiversity Centre & Forest Research Institute Malaysia. [Retrieved 30 January 2023].