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Lophopetalum pallidum Laws.

Family Name: Celastraceae
Common Name: Kerueh, Kelempait

Lophopetalum pallidum, also known as Kerueh, is a tall tree which is critically endangered in Singapore. Fruit splits into 3 parts when ripe. Each seed is flattened, winged all around and dispersed by wind.

Full Sun: 6-8h Moderate Water Native to Singapore Tree


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Name Status (wrt SBG BG-BASE)
Common Names
Species Summary

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Big (>30m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 58 m
Tree or Palm – Trunk Diameter 3


Native Distribution Singapore, Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Primary Rainforest)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Native to Singapore (Critically Endangered (CR))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a very large tree that can grow up to 58 m in height.
Foliage Tertiary veins perpendicular to the mid-rib of the leaf.
Habitat Grows in dry primary rainforest and often on hillsides or ridge tops. Due to habitat loss, this has become a rare tree in Sabah and Sarawak. In Singapore, a single tree, about 36 m tall with a girth of more than 3 m girth, was found beside the MacRitchie Nature Trail. Fewer than 50 mature individuals occur in Singapore.
Etymology Lophopetalum, the genus epithet, is derived from the Greek "lopho", meaning "tufted, crested, bristled or maned", and petalum, meaning "petalled". The species epithet, pallidum, means "greenish, somewhat pale".
Ethnobotanical Uses Cultural / Religious ( The bark is used by the indigenous people in Peninsular Malaysia to make dart poison.)

Landscaping Features

Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Well-Drained Soils
Landscape Uses Reforestation

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Seed or Spore Dispersal Abiotic (Explosive Dehiscence)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Slow


Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) - Angiosperms and Gymnosperms Brown
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type 1 Dehiscent Dry Fruit
Fruit Type 2 Capsule


References Ganesan, S.K. 2009. Lophopetalum pallidum Laws. (Celastraceae), an addition to the flora of Singapore. Nature in Singapore. 2009. 2. 459-461

Image Repository



Master ID 29713
Species ID 4022
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: 27 July 2021.