Family: Hypoxidaceae R. Br.

Curculigo seychellensis

Distribution: Endemic to granitic inner islands of Seychelles archipelago (Mahé, Praslin and Silhouette). There are 13 species of genus Curculigo distributed from West Africa to the southern parts of China.

Ecology: Shady places in under-storey of evergreen middle elevation forests (150–600 m a. s. l.). It prefers humid, nutrient-rich soils and stable tropical climate with high annual averages of temperature (23–27 °C), and rainfall (2000 mm).

Curculigo seychellensis

Description: Robust perennial acaulescent herb with underground rhizome. Leaves are 50–120 cm long, with triangular dark spines on petiole; blade is lanceolate, 30–70 × 20–50 cm, plicate, with splitted apex and long tips; lateral veins are paralel without anastomoses. Spicate to umbellate, up to 15 cm long inflorescence arises directly from rhizome; 3-merous flowers are about 3 cm in diameter; tepals are 6, yellow; stamens are 6; pistil is compound from 3 carpels, ovary is inferior.

Note: Sterile plants are similar in appearance to palm seedlings.

Curculigo seychellensisCurculigo seychellensis
Curculigo seychellensis

These images were taken in Seychelles, Mahé Is., NP Morne Seychellois: Morne Blanc and Val Riche (by Vít Grulich and Alena Vydrová, February 2 and 4, 2011).