Calamus erinaceus (Becc.) J.Dransf., Kew Bull. 32: 484 (1978)

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (
Borneo present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Cambodia present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Malaya present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Philippines present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Sumatera present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Thailand present (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Unaccountably rare in Brunei, known from a single collection. Elsewhere abundant in coastal formations throughout Borneo, Sumatra, Peninsular Malaysia and S Thailand, very rare inland. (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A


  • C. erinaceus is an unmistakable and very beautiful species. It is one of the distinctive features of forest on the landward fringe of the mangrove; very rarely it can be found away from mangrove, but always near to the sea. Why it should be so rare in Brunei is not understood. (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A


  • Like a hedgehog) (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A


  • Produces a medium to low quality coarse cane. (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A


  • Robust clustering rattan tending to form thickets on the landward side of mangrove or behind coastal sand bars; stem climbing to 15 m, without sheaths 2-3.5 cm diam., with sheaths to 5 cm diam., rarely more, internodes to c. 30 cm. Sheaths orange-yellow to yellowish-green when fresh, very densely armed with slender grey-brown spines, 2-35 mm, held horizontally and arranged in horizontal or oblique whorls, spines and sheath epidermis densely covered with grey deciduous indumentum; spines around the leaf sheath mouth upward-pointing, grouped in 5’s to 9’s, the longest to 60 mm; knee and base of petiole very conspicuous, unarmed, orange-yellow, when young densely covered with indumentum. Leaf cirrate to 4.5 m long including the petiole to 25 cm and cirrus to 2 m; petiole armed along the margins only with grouped spines to 3 cm; leaflets to 70 or more on each side of the rachis, grey-green, very regular, close, limply pendulous, the longest to 40 × 2 cm, armed with short bristles along the margins and on the veins on the lower surface, the lower surface also with white wax and minute brown scales. Inflorescences to 1.5 m with very short peduncle enclosed by the leaf sheath; primary bracts armed with groups of short spines; partial inflorescences about 7 on each side of the axis, gradually decreasing in size distally; male rachillae 1-2 cm long with close distichous flowers; female rachillae 10 cm long with laxer distichous flowers. Fruit rounded, relatively small, to 1 cm diam., covered in 12 vertical rows of straw-coloured scales. Seed rounded, c. 7 mm diam.; endosperm homogeneous. Seedling leaf unknown. (Fig. 32, Pls 8A, 10A) (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A

Materials Examined

  • TUT: Telisai, Kpg. Danau, Wong 2094. (Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam)A


    A. Dransfield, J. 1997: The Rattans of Brunei Darussalam
    B. World Checklist of Arecaceae