Araceae Juss.

Alocasia (Schott) G.Don

This genus is accepted, and its native range is Tropical & Subtropical Asia to E. Australia.


CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

Tropical and subtropical humid forest; geophytes or terrestrial, forest floor, in leaf litter, humus deposits on rocks, usually in deep shade, sometimes in exposed areas of forest regrowth.
Trop. & Subtrop. Asia to E. Australia.
Terrestrial or geophytic plants with colocasioid venation, leaves often peltate when juvenile; spathe constricted, spadix with an appendix, flowers unisexual, without staminodes. Differs from Colocasia in having entire, strongly sinuate or pinnatifid leaf blades (always entire in Colocasia ), basal placentation and few ovules.
General Description
HABIT : medium-sized to rarely arborescent and gigantic, seasonally dormant to evergreen herbs, stem thick, often hypogeal, sometimes stoloniferous and bulbiferous, epigeal stem usually erect, with clear to milky latex. LEAVES : few to several in terminal crown, sometimes each subtended by a cataphyll. PETIOLE : long, sometimes asperate or glandular, sheath relatively long, sometimes deciduous. BLADE : sometimes pubescent, juvenile blade peltate, at maturity usually sagittate, less often ± hastate or cordate, peltate in some species, margin entire, sinuate or slightly to deeply pinnatifid, posterior lobes ovate or triangular; basal ribs well-developed, glands present in axils of primary lateral veins and midrib, primary lateral veins pinnate, forming submarginal collective vein,1-2 closely adjacent marginal veins also present, secondary and tertiary lateral veins arising from the primaries at a wide angle, then arching strongly towards leaf margin, sometimes forming interprimary veins,higher order venation reticulate. INFLORESCENCE : 2-many in each floral sympodium, appearing with the leaves. PEDUNCLE : usually shorter than petiole. SPATHE : strongly constricted between tube and blade, tube with convolute margins, shorter than blade, ovoid or oblong, persistent and then splitting irregularly in fruit, blade oblong, usually boat-shaped, rarely fornicate, at anthesis at first erect, then reflexing and later usually deciduous; in Xenophya group blade is persistent, erect, convolute, gaping only basally. SPADIX : shorter than spathe, female zone short, conoid-cylindric, separated from male by a much narrower zone of sterile flowers, male zone usually cylindric, appendix conoid to cylindric, surface with irregular, labyrinthine network of fissures. FLOWERS : unisexual, perigone absent. MALE FLOWER : 3-12(-36)-androus, stamens connate into an obpyramidal, subhexagonal, truncate, rarely linear ( A. brisbanensis) synandrium, thecae linear-oblong, lateral, dehiscing by apical pore. POLLEN : extruded in strands, inaperturate, spherical to subspheroidal, medium-sized (mean 35 µm., range 31-39 µm.), exine spinose. STERILE MALE FLOWERS : synandrodes shallow, obpyramidal, compressed, truncate. FEMALE FLOWER : ovary ovoid or oblong, 1-locular or partially 3-4-locular at apex, ovules 6-10, orthotropous, hemiorthotropous, hemianatropous or anatropous, funicle short, placenta basal, style short, stigma depressed-capitate, ± distinctly 3-4-lobed. BERRY : generally reddish, ellipsoid or obconic-ellipsoid or subglobose, 1-5-seeded, stigma remnants persistent. SEED : subglobose to ellipsoid, testa thickish, smooth or scabrous, embryo broadly conoid, shortly cylindric or elongate, endosperm copious.

Native to:

Andaman Is., Assam, Bangladesh, Bismarck Archipelago, Borneo, Cambodia, China South-Central, China Southeast, East Himalaya, Hainan, India, Japan, Jawa, Laccadive Is., Laos, Lesser Sunda Is., Malaya, Maluku, Myanmar, Nansei-shoto, Nepal, New Guinea, New South Wales, Nicobar Is., Philippines, Queensland, Solomon Is., Sri Lanka, Sulawesi, Sumatera, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, West Himalaya

Introduced into:

Ascension, Brazil Northeast, Caroline Is., Chagos Archipelago, Comoros, Cook Is., Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Fiji, Galápagos, Gilbert Is., Guinea, Gulf of Guinea Is., Haiti, Hawaii, Honduras, Jamaica, Kermadec Is., Leeward Is., Maldives, Marianas, Marquesas, Marshall Is., New Caledonia, New Zealand North, Nicaragua, Niue, Ogasawara-shoto, Paraguay, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Samoa, Seychelles, Society Is., St.Helena, Sudan, Tibet, Tokelau-Manihiki, Tonga, Trinidad-Tobago, Tuamotu, Tubuai Is., Vanuatu, Venezuela, Venezuelan Antilles, Windward Is.

Alocasia (Schott) G.Don appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status Has image?
Jan 1, 2016 Simaga, J.M. [9299], Papua New Guinea K001235124 No
Apr 18, 2007 Edwards, P.J. [2064], Malaysia 75520.000 No
Sands, M.J.S. [502], Indonesia 13369.001 No
Malaysia 18245.000 No
29047.081 No
34265.000 No
Bogner, J. [405], Thailand 34426.000 No
Boyce, P. [743], Malaysia 59115.000 No
Johns, R.J. [8239], Indonesia 59398.000 No
Boyce, P.C. [891], Thailand 60525.000 No
Boyce, P.C. [889], Thailand 60526.000 No

First published in R.Sweet, Hort. Brit., ed. 3: 631 (1839)

Accepted by

  • Boyce, P.C. (2008). A review of Alocasia (Araceae: Colocasieae) for Thailand including a novel species and new species records from south-west Thailand Thai Forest Bulletin (Botany) 36: 1-17.
  • 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.
  • Govaerts, R. (1995). World Checklist of Seed Plants 1(1, 2): 1-483, 1-529. MIM, Deurne.
  • Mansor, M., Boyce, P.C., Othman, A.S. & Sulaiman, B. (2012). The Araceae of peninsular Malaysia: 1-146. Penerbit Universiti Sains Malaysia.


CATE Araceae

  • Mayo, S.J., Bogner, J. & Boyce, P.C. 1997. The genera of Araceae. 370 pp.
  • Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 2008. World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

  • 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

  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2022. 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 2022. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.