Livistona tahanensis Becc., Webbia 5: 17 (1921)

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Map uses TDWG level 3 distributions (
Malayapresent (World Checklist of Arecaceae)B
Malaysia. In Pahang, endemic to Gunung Tahan. (Dowe, J.L., A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae))A



  • The name Livistona tahanensis was first used by Ridley (1915) in an annotated list of plants of Gunung Tahan, Pahang, Malaysia. There was no description provided but an indication that the species was pending description by Beccari. Beccari (1921) provided the first formal description, based on the collection Wray & Robinson 5355 from 1000 m on Gunung Tahan. Livistona tahanensis is a moderate canopy palm to 8 m tall, with persistent petiole stubs on most of the stem; leaves are moderate and regularly segmented; segment apices are rigid, and with a bifurcate cleft to 16% of the segment length; the inflorescence is unbranched, not extending beyond the limit of the crown, and with about 4 partial inflorescences; bracts are loosely tubular; flowers are cream with red tipped sepals; fruit are globose to depressed globose, to 14 mm long to 12 mm wide, and glossy green at maturity. (Dowe, J.L., A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae))A



  • Hermaphroditic palm. Trunk to 8 m tall, ca 12 cm dbh, leaf scars narrow, internodes narrow, petiole stubs persistent for most of its length. Leaves 30-40 in a ± globose crown; petiole to ca 70 cm long, 12-15 mm wide in the middle, 5-6 mm wide distally, adaxially flat, with scattered appressed hyaline ciliate-margined scales, margins with short, flat, brown, blunt triangular 5-8 mm long spines throughout, distally reducing in size; leaf-base fibres prominent, fine, disintegrating; appendage very long, membranous, bright mahogany red, polished on both surfaces; lamina costapalmate, regularly segmented, subcircular, 57-76 cm long, ca 90 cm wide, rigid, flat to undulate, adaxially dark green, abaxially grey-green; lamina divided for ca 58% of its length, with 40-50 segments, depth of apical cleft ca 16% of the segment length, apical lobes rigid; parallel veins 6-7 each side of midrib; transverse veins thinner than parallel veins. Inflorescences unbranched at the base, 80-91 cm long, not extending beyond the limit of the crown, branched to 3 orders; partial inflorescences ca 4, longest to ca 23 cm long; prophyll not seen; peduncular bracts lacking; rachis bracts loosely tubular; peduncle 2.5 cm wide at the base; rachillae 7-10 cm long, thin, green-red, tomentose. Flowers very small; sepals ovate, cream tipped red; petals oblong, blunt, tip thickened, incurved, cream; anthers white; style short, conic. Fruit globose to depressed-globose, 12-14 mm long, glossy green; epicarp smooth; suture line extends for the full length of the fruit, marked with lip-like structures; pedicel 2-3 mm long. Seed not seen. Eophyll not seen. (Dowe, J.L., A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae))A

Materials Examined

  • Specimens examined: MALAYSIA: Pahang. Gunung Tahan, Wray & Robinson 5355 (BM holotype, FI); Gunung Tahan, 3500-4000 ft alt., Nur 8006 (SING); Gunung Tahan, 3500-4500 ft alt., Holttum 20631 (BO, K, SING, UC); Gunung Tahan, 3000 ft., Corner 36597 (BO, K, SING); Gunung Tahan, 3500 ft, Jan 1923, Pendlebury s.n. (K); Gunung Tahan, 3500 ft, Jan 1923, Pendlebury & Kloss s.n. (BM); Gunung Tahan, Tahan Woods near Wrays Camp, Dransfield 659 (K). (Dowe, J.L., A taxonomic account of Livistona R.Br. (Arecaceae))A