Molineria latifolia (Dryand. ex W. T. Aiton) Herb. ex Kurz

Etymology Genus After Juan Ignacio Molina, a 19th century Chilean botanist and priest
Species Wide leaves
Family Hypoxidaceae
Synonyms Curculigo latifolia Dryand. ex W.T.Aiton, Molineria longiflora Kurz
Common Names Palm Grass, Weevil Lily
Status Native: Vulnerable
Form Herb
Native Distribution India, Myanmar, Thailand, Sumatra, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Borneo, Java

Diagnostics:

Molineria latifolia is a herb growing up to 1m high with recognisable palm-like leaves. The leaves are simple, long and broad. Numerous hairs can be seen on the leaves, a feature that distinguishes Molineria latifolia from another similar-looking species, Molineria capitulata. Bright yellow flowers appear on the base of the plant.


Interesting Facts:

The sweet, edible fruits help stimulate the appetite and contain the chemical neoculin, a sweet-tasting protein that has taste-modifying activity to convert sourness to sweetness. (Lim, 2012)


Habit of Molineria latifolia, as seen at Macritchie Nature Trail.

The leaves have hairs on the surface.

Parallel venation on a leaf.

The yellow flowers appear at the base of the plant.

Close-up look of the yellow flowers.

References

TK Lim. (2012) Edible Medicinal and Non-Medicinal Plants: Volume 4, Fruits. pg 59-64. Springer Science & Business Media, Germany. 1023 pp.




Author: Ethan
Posted: 2022-01-29 / Modified: 2022-02-04