Singapore Government Logo

A Singapore Government Agency Website

Syzygium pycnanthum


Syzygium pycnanthum Merr. & L.M.Perry

Family Name: Myrtaceae
Synonyms: Syzygium foxworthianum (Ridl.) Merr. & L.M.Perry, Eugenia densiflora (Blume) Miq.
Common Name: Wild Rose Apple, Kelat Jambu, Kelat Asam, Kelampok, Kopo, Jambu Kapa, Jambon, Jambu Air Antan, Jambu Air Mawar Hutan, Kelat Lapis, Kelat Putih Bukit


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Medium (16m-30m), Small (6m-15m), Shrubby (1m-5m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Conical, Irregular
Maximum Height 2 m to 21 m


Native Distribution Indochina, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Secondary Rainforest, Coastal Forest, Riverine)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Native to Singapore (Critically Endangered (CR))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a small to medium-sized tree, up to 21m tall.
Crown Rounded-conical, with erect stems and branching.
Foliage It has opposite stalked leaves that are leathery, usually elliptic oblong to oblong egg-shaped, 18–36 cm long by 4.6–10 cm wide, and each has a pointed leaf tip, 2–3 veins running parallel to the leaf margin, and up to 20 pairs of side veins.
Flowers It produces bisexual flowers that are pink or white, 3.8–5 cm across, and found in up to 15 cm long flower clusters located at the ends of its branches.
Fruit It produces fleshy fruits that are round, about 2–3 cm across, and pink to purple.
Habitat It grows in lowland and hill forests, often near rocky rivers, and on sandy and rocky shores. In Singapore, it can be found in Central Catchment Nature Reserve, and Pulau Ubin.
Associated Fauna Its flowers are probably pollinated by bats, and fruits are likely eaten by birds.
Cultivation Tolerates saline soils and salt spray. Propagate by seeds, stem cuttings or air-layering. Termite-resistant rootstock often used as graft stock for other Syzygium species.
Etymology Greek syzygos, joined, referring to the paired leaves of this species; Greek pycnanthum, dense-flowered, referring to the flowering shoot of this species
Ethnobotanical Uses Food (Fruit & Vegetable): Its flowers and fruits are edible, although the latter are sour and unpleasant.
Timber & Products: It is harvested for timber.
Others: Its bark is used to obtain brown dye.

Landscaping Features

Landscaping It is suitable to be planted at roadsides, and coastal areas, as it can tolerate hot, sunny, high wind, and frequent salt spray conditions. It also has attractive showy flowers.
Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Landscape Uses Roadside Tree / Palm, Coastal, General, Shade Providing Tree / Palm, Parks & Gardens, Riverine
Thematic Landscaping Naturalistic Garden
SGMP Treatment

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Bird Attracting (Fruits)
Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna)
Seed or Spore Dispersal Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Rootzone Tolerance Fertile Loamy Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Saline Soils / Salt Spray, Moist Soils
Maintenance Requirements Moderate
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Smooth, Glossy / Shiny, Raised / Sunken Veins, Leathery
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Opposite
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Elliptical, Oblong)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 3.0 (Tree - Intermediate Canopy)

Non - Foliar and Storage

Trunk Type (Non Palm) Woody
Stem Type & Modification Woody
Root Type Underground (Tap Root, Fibrous Root)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Pink, White
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Axillary
Flower Symmetry Radial
Inflorescence Type Panicle
Flowering Habit Polycarpic

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) Purple, Red
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type Fleshy Fruit , Berry

Image Repository



Master ID 1872
Species ID 3165
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 18 April 2023.