Philodendron gigas Croat
  • Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 84: 446 (1997) 

Notes: Distribution: Panama

General Description

Hemiepiphytic, growing to 15--20 m; stem appressed-climbing (or scandent when preadult), sap reddish, viscous, leaf scars conspicuous, to 4 cm wide; internodes short, 1--2 cm long, (pre-adult length to 15 cm long), (3)6--10 cm diam., glaucous, olive-green to dark green, coarsely white striate near apex, the epidermis with reddish brown patches and reddish brown raised ridges, becoming brown and scurfy, ridged; roots scurfy, short and blunt, dark reddish brown, 5--11 mm diam., feeder root to 3 cm diam., grayish, sparsely and conspicuously warty; cataphylls 30--50 cm long, to 25--30 cm broad at base (when flattened out), more or less D-shaped, unribbed to sharply 2-ribbed (ribs low), greenish white to reddish, thick, juicy, drying reddish brown, persisting semi-intact, eventually as a reticulum of fibers and patches of epidermis; LEAVES: petioles (59)98--137 cm long, (1.5)2--3 cm diam., subterete, medium to dark green, semiglossy, weakly and obtusely flattened adaxially, especially near apex, surface densely and finely short-lineate to faintly striate; blades ovate to narrowly ovate, moderately coriaceous, bicolorous, acuminate at apex (the acumen weakly inrolled), cordate to sagittate at base, (44)81--125 cm long, (30)37--90 cm wide (1.4--1.7 times longer than wide), (0.9--1.2 times longer than petiole), subcoriaceous, margins hyaline, upper surface dark green, velvety, matte, lower surface slightly paler, semiglossy to matte, sometimes tinged pale reddish between veins; anterior lobe 33--102 cm long (3.5--6.1 times longer than posterior lobes); posterior lobes 13--26 cm long, 13--24 cm wide, incurved and overlapping with sinus closed on adult plants, obtuse; midrib flat to weakly convex, silvery-white to yellowish green, paler than surface above, narrowly rounded and slightly paler than surface below; basal veins (3)9--12 per side, first and second free to base, most of remainder coalesced to 4 cm, 2 coalesced to 14 cm; posterior rib naked 1.5--4 cm; primary lateral veins (4)7-10 per side, departing midrib at a 40--60ºangle, arcuate to the margins, narrowly weakly sunken and slightly paler than surface and marginally discolored above, prominently round-raised, paler than surface below; minor veins weakly visible but not distinct below, arising from both the midrib and primary lateral veins. INFLORESCENCES (post-anthesis) to 7 per axil; peduncle 13--16.5 cm long, green, white-striate, especially at apex; prophylls to 22 cm long; spathe 13--16.5 cm long, 5 cm diam., moderately constricted above the tube, weakly glossy; spathe blade 5.8 cm long, white, tinged reddish outside, dark red-violet inside; spathe tube oblong-ellipsoid, 7.5 cm long, purplish violet, short white lineate outside, dark violet-purple, short white lineate inside; spadix sessile; to 12.5 cm long, ca. 1.5 cm diam., constricted above sterile portion; pistillate portion pale green, more or less ovoid, 4.2 cm long in front, 3.4 cm long in back, 2.2 cm diam.; staminate portion 11 cm long; fertile staminate portion to 2.5 cm diam. midway; sterile staminate portion 2.4 cm diam., slightly broader than pistillate portion; pistils 4--6 mm long, 1.4 mm diam.; ovary 4--5-locular, with more or less axile placentation; locules 2.8--5.2 mm long; ovules ca. 20 per locule, 0.1--0.25 mm long, funicle shorter than to equal in length to ovules, style similar to style type B; style crown domed, irregularly lobed; stigma hemispheroid, 1--1.2 mm diam., 0.4--0.7 mm high. INFRUCTESCENCE with berries greenish white; seeds 3--4 per locule, 1.6 mm long.


Premontane wet forest and Tropical wet forest.


Endemic to the Canal Area where it is known only along the El Llano-Cartí road in both Panamá Province and in the Comarca de San Blas.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
Found in
  • Southern America Central America Panamá


  • 1 Govaerts, R. & Frodin, D.G. (2002). World Checklist and Bibliography of Araceae (and Acoraceae): 1-560. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • 2 Croat, T.Bernard A revision of Philodendron subgenus Philodendron (Araceae) for Mexico and Central America Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 84, (1997).

 Information From

CATE Araceae
Haigh, A., Clark, B., Reynolds, L., Mayo, S.J., Croat, T.B., Lay, L., Boyce, P.C., Mora, M., Bogner, J., Sellaro, M., Wong, S.Y., Kostelac, C., Grayum, M.H., Keating, R.C., Ruckert, G., Naylor, M.F. and Hay, A., CATE Araceae, 14 Dec 2011 . 17 Dec 2011.
  • A All Rights Reserved
eMonocot. (2010, 1st November). Retrieved Wednesday, 8th February, 2012, from
  • B Content licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License
World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
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