Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Medinilla venosa
(Blume) Blume, Melastomataceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Other Latin names:  Melastoma venosum Blume

Common name(s): [more details]

English: holdtight

Habit:  shrub

Description:  "Erect shrubs 2-3 m tall; uppermost branches rounded, covered with spreading, plumose, brown hairs.  Leaves somewhat unequal in each pair, elliptic, elliptic-oblong, or elliptic-lanceolate, 7-18 cm long, 2.5-9 cm wide, pinnately nerved with 3-4 pairs of primary nerves diverging from the central nerve at successive points above base of blade, upper surface essentially glabrous at maturity, lower surface covered with spreading, plumose hairs, margins entire, apex acute to acuminate, base of larger leaves rounded to subauriculate, petioles 4-40 mm long.  Inflorescences 8-11 cm long (incl. peduncle), pedicels 6-8 mm long in fruit, bracts and bracteoles ovate to elliptic-ovate or lanceolate, 5-15 mm long, 2-8 (-14) mm wide, 3-5-nerved, deciduous; hypanthium ca. 4 mm long, moderately to densely stellate pubescent; calyx lobes 4, erect, broadly rounded, ca. 2 mm long; petals 4, pink, obliquely obovate, 9-11 mm long, 5-6 mm wide at apex; stamens 8, more or less equal; filaments 4.5-5 mm long; anthers 3.5-4 mm long, the truncate dorsal spur ca. 0.25 mm long, deflexed, the ventral appendages ca. 1 mm long; ovary densely bristly at summit.  Berries reportedly white at maturity, 4-celled, 5-7 mm long.  Seeds papillose, ca. 0.5 mm long"  (Wagner et al., 1999; pp. 909-910).

Habitat/ecology:  Naturalized in wet coastal forests on Maui, Hawai‘i.  "The species is reportedly an epiphyte in its native range, but the adventive population on Maui appears to be terrestrial."  (Wagner et al., 1999; pp. 909-910).

Propagation:  Seed, maybe bird-dispersed.

Native range:  Indonesia and the Philippine Islands (GRIN).


Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 909-910)
Philippine Islands
Philippine Islands native
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Catanduanes, Luzon, Mindanao, Negros
Philippine Islands
Philippine Islands native
Merrill, Elmer D. (1923) (p. 205)
In primary forests at low altitudes.

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This page was created on 1 JAN 1999 and was last updated on 20 MAY 2013.