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  1. Family: Araceae Juss.
    1. Genus: Pothos L.
      1. Pothos tener Wall.

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Sulawesi to Vanuatu.


    CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

    Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. In Malesia: Sulawesi, Maluku, New Guinea. One of us (A.H.) observed this species in Vanuatu in 1989, but we are notaware of any herbarium material. Although very widespread and common east of Wallacea, this species is not found in Australia. In the Philippines it is replaced by P. dolichophyllus and P. ovatifolius, and in Borneo and further west by P. ovatifolius.
    In a wide range of situations, most commonly in lowland rainforest and regrowth but also found in upper hill forest and in sago palm swamp, and on limestone. In New Guinea it is very common in the lowlands, especially in disturbed forests, often almost completely covering trees and hanging to the ground.
    General Description
    Very robust and vigorous, sometimes smothering, moderately ramified homeophyllous root-climbing liane reaching into the crowns of canopy trees. Shootsystem rather poorly differentiated into adherent and flowering branches; stem of mature sterile shoot to 2 cm diam., internodes up to 35 cm long, terete in cross-section; stem of juvenile shoot to 4 mm diam., terete in cross-section with the leaves slightly congested to scattered, the petioles weakly ascending, and the blades pendulous; eocaul foraging and climbing, often very long. LEAVES rich green, glossy above, stiffly chartaceous, drying pale grey-yellowish green; petiole 9–16.5 × 0.3–1.2 cm, stout, sheath prominent, reaching to the base of apical geniculum; blade 15–50 × 5–19 cm, pendulous, elliptic to ovate-oblong, tip somewhat acuminate to obtuse, ultimately with a flexuous filiform mucro, base acute; primary lateral venation diverging at c. 60–80°, crossed by usually three intramarginal veins on each side of the midrib, these arising from near the base of the midrib and running more or less to the leaf tip. INFLORESCENCE solitary at the end of leafy, pendulous shoots; peduncle 10–20 × 0.2–0.5 cm, about equaling the petiole of the subtending leaf, most of it within the sheath at flowering, but extending up to twice original length in fruiting specimens. Spathe 11–27 × 1–5 cm, somewhat exceeding the spadix, narrowly lanceolate, distally somewhat twisted, membranous, green. Spadix conspicuously stipitate; stipe 2–4 × 0.15–0.25 cm; fertile portion 10–22 × 0.35–0.8 cm, long-cylindrical, brownish green at flowering. Flowers c. 2.5 mm diam. with (4)–6 free to fused tepals and (4)–6 stamens. INFRUCTESCENCE considerably elongated, to 40 cm long, pendulous, often twisted, with very many berries; fruit to c. 2.5 × 1.5 cm, ovoid, scarlet when ripe; seeds c. 3 × 6 mm ellipsoid.



    Native to:

    Bismarck Archipelago, Maluku, New Guinea, Solomon Is., Sulawesi, Vanuatu


    Other Data

    Pothos tener Wall. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Jul 7, 2000 Utteridge, T.M.A. [391], New Guinea 29047.988
    Jul 7, 2000 Utteridge, T.M.A. [391], Indonesia 71430.000
    Jun 20, 2000 Utteridge, T.M.A. [108], Indonesia 71460.000
    Porter, G. [Cat. no. 4439], Malaysia K001039011
    s.coll. [Cat. no. 4439] K001039010
    Sands, M.J.S. Pothos rumphii 29047.171
    Forman, L.L. [240], Indonesia Pothos rumphii 6452.000
    Walker, J.S. [DB300], Indonesia Pothos rumphii 73092.000


    First published in W.Roxburgh, Fl. Ind. 1: 454 (1820)

    Accepted by

    • Kurniawan, A., Adjie, B. & Boyce, P.C. (2011). Studies on the Araceae of Sulawesi I: New taxa of Schismatoglottis and Homalomena, and a preliminary checklist and keys for Sulawesi Acta Phytotaxonomica et Geobotanica 61: 40-50.
    • Govaerts, R. & Frodin, D.G. (2002). World Checklist and Bibliography of Araceae (and Acoraceae): 1-560. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.


    CATE Araceae
    Haigh, A., Clark, B., Reynolds, L., Mayo, S.J., Croat, T.B., Lay, L., Boyce, P.C., Mora, M., Bogner, J., Sellaro, M., Wong, S.Y., Kostelac, C., Grayum, M.H., Keating, R.C., Ruckert, G., Naylor, M.F. and Hay, A., CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
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    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.