Friday, January 6, 2012

Mega Foliage

Dillenia megalantha
I have pictures of these tree species with unusually large leaves. All measure more than a foot in length and width.  Though some people may prefer plants with finer foliage, I particularly find them different and very interesting.  I myself would like to keep them as ornamentals in the garden, but I do not have the space to grow them. But I have tried rearing seedlings of all at one point in time.

Katmon-bayani in Reynold Sioson's farm
My present favorite of them all is Dillenia megalantha or katmon-bayani.  The leaves are similar to your common katmon's, which are segmented and serrated, but much bigger.  Ever since I saw a specimen of it in Reynold Sioson's farm, I became crazy to find my own specimen.  And I did found one, sold as the last piece in a Quezon nursery. It is quite a slow grower, coming out with only one new leaf in a month's time.  My specimen has probably only grown 4 leaves ever since I got it more than a half year ago. But they are impressive reaching almost 2 feet in length.

Macaranga grandifolia in NAPWC
The pinkish inflorescence
Another one of my favorite species is Macaranga grandifolia or takip-asin which I first encountered in the grounds of Makiling High School for the Arts. It is called such because some local cultures use it as packaging for salt to sell or trade. Farmers even wrap their rice and viand to bring to the rice fields in the takip-asin's leaves. Everytime I see a nice growing specimen, in the wild or in a garden, I am reminded of its beauty. though it appears to be just a slightly overgrown binunga or Macaranga tanarius.  But unlike the latter, takip-asin's underside and flowers are reddish in color.  A healthy and flowering specimen is really a sight to behold.  

Small specimen
The leaves of probably Sterculia macrophylla
The most unusually shaped is the large maple-like leaves of this Sterculia which is probabbly S. macrophylla or tapinag-laparan. The margin is lobed unlike the other native Sterculias I have seen.  The large leaves are indeed attractive and ornamental.  I can't understand why it has remained virtually unknown and unpropagated. It is a shame because it is quite fast growing and easy to grow in the garden, apart from it being really beautiful.
Leaf detail of A. treculianus
Chipohu in Batanes
Last in this blog's list is the Batanes chipohu or Artocarpus treculianus which is a slightly attractive version of  the antipolo or Artocarpus blancoi.  Both are Philippine natives but antipolo is more widely distributed.  Chipohu has more regularly shaped leaves and glossier surface.  The ivatans even use them as organic eating plates similar to what Tagalog's do with banana leaves. I acquired a specimen of this tree from the Batanes ENRO nursery.  But my plant was slow growing and eventually died in my garden.  I would never know if it could prove to be a worthy plant to grow for the urban garden.  Hope I could acquire another specimen in the future.          


dr magsasaka said...

They are all beautiful.

metscaper said...

Indeed they are!

vinesandspines said...

are the fruits of those 2 native artocarpus edible?

Charisse said...

Hello! I just wandering where I could find Macaranga grandifolia, and if still available at the Makiling High School for Arts? And if yes, did you know someone I could ask from the school? It would be a big help for my perspective research study, I would appreciate your response.
Thank you!