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Bruguiera cylindrica


Bruguiera cylindrica (L.) Bl.

Family Name: Rhizophoraceae
Common Name: Pakau Putih, Berus, Bakau Putih, Black Mangrove, Reflexed Orange Mangrove, Bakau Belukap, Bakau Berus, Bakau Kecil, Berus Ngayong, Bosang, Kaakkandal, Kakandan, Pannukkucci, 柱果木榄


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Medium (16m-30m)), Aquatic & Hydrophyte
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Conical, Columnar
Maximum Height 20 m


Native Distribution From India and Sri Lanka, to Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, the Philippines, south throughout Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, throughout Indonesia to Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and south to northern Australia
Native Habitat Shoreline (Mangrove Forest)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Native to Singapore (Least Concern (LC))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a medium- to large-sized tree up to 20 m tall, with short buttresses and kneed roots that rise above the substrate. The tree has greyish bark and is often observed with propagules (developing seedlings) hanging on the branches.
Foliage Its opposite, long-stalked leaves have thinly fleshy, leathery leaf blades that are oval, 6–17 by 2–8 cm, shiny green above, and light green below. Its leaf blades have smooth-margins.
Flowers The pendulous flowers are borne on short stalks, in small clusters of about 3 at the leaf axils. The calyx of each flower is short, 4–6 by 2 mm, light green, top-shaped, opening up into 8 pointed lobes at the distal end. The petals are 3–4 mm long, white, hairy, with 2–3 bristles at the tip.
Fruit The fruit develops within the calyx, and become enlarged when ripened. The calyx lobes become reflexed as the single seed germinates within the calyx while attached to the parent plant, forming a green hypocotyl tipped by the radicle that emerges from the calyx, known as a propagule. The propagule is cylindrical, short, thin, 8–15 by 0.8 cm, turning from green to purple when mature.
Habitat It grows in firm clay or mud, in both the landward and seaward sides of mangrove forests. It occurs locally in all mangrove forests, e.g., Khatib Bongsu, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Western Catchment Area, Pulau Semakau, Pulau Ubin, and Pulau Tekong.
Associated Fauna Its flowers are insect-pollinated. It is the preferred local food plant for caterpillars of the moth, Olene mendosa.
Cultivation It is propagated by the propagules. Washed up propagules may be collected from the shore, or propagules that are fully developed (purple tinged) on the parent tree can be removed and planted directly into the potting medium. It is able to grow in freshwater conditions.
Etymology Latin Bruguiera, after J. G. Bruguieres (1750–1799), French expolorer; Latin cylindrica, cylindrical, referring to the shape of the propagule of this species
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts : Edible Fruits, Edible Roots
Food (Fruit & Vegetable): The young roots of the seedlings are reportedly eaten with sugar and coconut. The young hypocotyls are either boiled or preserved and eaten as a vegetable or salad in Malaysia and Vietnam.
Timber & Products: It is used as firewood and charcoal. The timber is used for minor, temporary construction as it is not very durable.
Others: Tannin is also extracted from the bark.

Landscaping Features

Landscaping This tree can be planted half-submerged along the water edges of ponds, reservoirs and waterways, or on waterlogged soil for its attractive lush foliage and unique propagules. It is rather slow-growing, hence minimum maintenance is needed.
Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage, Ornamental Form
Landscape Uses Coastal, Beachfront / Shoreline, Riverine, Pond / Lake / River, Marsh / Bog
SGMP Treatment

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Moth Food Plant (Flower Nectar)
Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna) (Insects (Butterfly, Moth))
Seed or Spore Dispersal Abiotic (Water)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Lots of Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Rootzone Tolerance Moist Soils, Waterlogged Soils (Does not Drain Site), Saline Soils / Salt Spray
Propagation Method Viviparious Propagule


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Leathery
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Opposite
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Oval)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire
Foliar Apex - Tip Acute
Foliar Base Cuneate

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) White, Green - Light Green, Cream / Off-White
Flower Location Axillary
Flower Symmetry Radial

Image Repository



Master ID 1972
Species ID 3264
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: 31 August 2021.