Aglaonema Schott
  • Wiener Z. Kunst 1829: 892 (1829) 

Notes: Distribution: NE. India to Papua New Guinea

General Description

HABIT : evergreen herbs, sometimes robust, stem epigeal, erect and unbranched or creeping and often branched, internodes green, smooth, often rooting at the nodes. LEAVES : several, forming an apical crown. PETIOLE : sheath usually long. BLADE : ovate-elliptic, narrowly elliptic, rarely broadly ovate or sublinear, base often unequal, attenuate to rounded, rarely cordate, often with striking, silvery and pale green patterns of leaf variegation; primary lateral veins pinnate, often weakly differentiated, running into marginal vein, higher order venation parallel-pinnate. INFLORESCENCE : 1-9 in each floral sympodium. PEDUNCLE : shorter or longer than petiole, deflexing in fruit. SPATHE : ovate to ± globose, erect, boat-shaped to convolute, not differentiated into tube and blade, often apiculate, green to whitish, slightly to strongly decurrent, marcescent. SPADIX : cylindric to clavate, shorter or longer than spathe, stipe long to almost absent, female zone rather few-flowered, contiguous with and much shorter than male zone, male zone fertile to apex. FLOWERS : unisexual, perigone absent. MALE FLOWER : stamens not forming clear floral groups, filaments usually distinct, connective thickened, thecae opposite, obovoid, short, dehiscing by apical pore or reniform transverse slit. POLLEN : inaperturate, ellipsoid, large (mean 52 µm.), range 37-67 µm.), exine essentially psilate. FEMALE FLOWER : ovary subglobose, 1-locular, ovule 1, anatropous, shortly ovoid, funicle very short, placenta basal, style short, thick, stigma broad, discoid, concave centrally. BERRY : ellipsoid, outer layer fleshy green but turning yellow, rarely white and finally red. SEED : ellipsoid, almost as large as berry, testa thin, ± smooth, tegmen inconspicuous, embryo large, endosperm absent.

Diagnostic Description

A terrestrial forest floor plant with pinnate primary lateral veins and spadix with contiguous male and female zones. Differs from Aglaodorum in having an inflorescence with a short peduncle, female flowers in spirals, an erect or repent stem and basal placentation.


Tropical humid forest; terrestrial on forest floor, occasionally in deciduous forest or regrowth, also in humus deposits on limestone and in peat deposits.


NE. India to Papua New Guinea.


Very widely cultivated as an ornamental plant.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
  • Introduced distribution
Found in
  • Asia-Temperate China China South-Central
  • China Southeast
  • Asia-Tropical Indian Subcontinent Assam
  • Bangladesh
  • East Himalaya
  • Indo-China Cambodia
  • Laos
  • Myanmar
  • Nicobar Is.
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • Malesia Borneo
  • Jawa
  • Lesser Sunda Is.
  • Malaya
  • Maluku
  • Philippines
  • Sulawesi
  • Sumatera
  • Papuasia New Guinea
Introduced into
  • Africa Western Indian Ocean Chagos Archipelago
  • Southern America Caribbean Cuba
  • Puerto Rico
  • Venezuelan Antilles


  • 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 Govaerts, R. (1995). World Checklist of Seed Plants 1(1, 2): 1-483, 1-529. MIM, Deurne.
  • 3 Gardens, K.""Royal Bot World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. (2008).
  • 4 Mayo, S.J., Bogner, J. & Boyce, P.C. The Genera of Araceae. (Royal Botanic Gardens Kew: 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
  • B
Global Biodiversity Information Facility
  • C All Rights Reserved
eMonocot. (2010, 1st November). Retrieved Wednesday, 8th February, 2012, from
  • D 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
  • E See You may use data on these Terms and Conditions and on further condition that: The data is not used for commercial purposes; You may copy and retain data solely for scholarly, educational or research purposes; You may not publish our data, except for small extracts provided for illustrative purposes and duly acknowledged; You acknowledge the source of the data by the words "With the permission of the Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew" in a position which is reasonably prominent in view of your use of the data; Any other use of data or any other content from this website may only be made with our prior written agreement.