Calamus gibbsianus Becc., Ann. Roy. Bot. Gard. (Calcutta) 11(App.): 58 (1913)

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In Sarawak known only from one collection from the Kelabit Highlands. Elsewhere in montane forest on Kinabalu and the Crocker Range at elevations of 1400-3000m. (Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak)A


  • C. gibbsianus is a very polymorphic species and reaches the highest altitude of any palm in Borneo. It has a characteristic inflorescence with strongly curved branches bearing conspicuous saucerlike bracteoles below the flowers or fruit, and the leaflets always have a conspicuous tuft of reddish-brown hair on the undersurface at the base. (Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak)A


  • Lillian Suzette Gibbs, 1870 - 1925, plant collector who made an important expedition to Kinabalu (Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak)A


  • In Sabah used for general tying and weaving by successive expeditions to Kinabalu. (Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak)A


  • Slender clustering montane rattan climbing to 8 m, rarely more, very rarely ± stemless; stem without sheaths 4-8 mm diam., with sheaths 7-30 mm diam., internodes short, rarely exceeding 10 cm. Sheaths dull mid to dark green, sparsely to densely armed with pale green spines to 7 mm, occasionally also with minute spicules arranged in partial whorls, sheaths and spines all densely covered in brown indumentum; knee conspicuous; ocrea inconspicuous to well developed, armed with groups of spicules or bristles. Flagellum to 1 m, rarely absent. Leaf ecirrate, onclimbing stems to 70 cm, more in stemless forms; petiole 3-18 cm, sparsely to densely armed; rachis covered with rusty-brown hairs; leaflets regularly arranged, 6 - 20 on each side of the rachis, distant to crowded, lanceolate, mid-leaf leaflets 45 -200 x 7 - 25 mm, usually very densely covered with minute spine-like papillae or short bristles on the undersurface and occasionally also on the upper surface, always with a dense tuft of orange to red-brown hairs on the undersurface at the leaflet base. Inflorescence usually to c. 1m long, with 1-4 partial inflorescences to c. 10 cm, strongly recurved and bearing short recurved rachillae, large conspicuous bracteoles and relatively large flowers. Mature fruit spherical to ovoid, to 16 x 12 mm, tipped by a short beak to 1 x 1 mm and covered in 15 - 18 vertical rows of pale brown, black-edged scales; seed ovoid to ± oblong, to 14 x 7 mm, deeply pitted and grooved; endosperm subruminate. Seedling leaf pinnate with c. 6 leaflets (Fig. 56). (Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak)A


    A. Dransfield, J. 1992: The Rattans of Sarawak