Singapore Government Logo

A Singapore Government Agency Website

Syzygium incarnatum


Syzygium incarnatum (Elmer) Merr. & L.M.Perry

Family Name: Myrtaceae
Synonyms: Eugenia punctulata, Eugenia cerina var. turbinata, Syzygium punctulatum, Eugenia cerina, Syzygium cerinum var. turbinatum, Syzygium cerinum var. montanum, Syzygium cerinum, Eugenia cerina var. montana, Eugenia incarnata
Common Name: Kelat Samak, Kelat Gelam


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

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Medium (16m-30m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Oval, Irregular
Maximum Height 27 m


Native Distribution Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, and Indonesia
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Primary Rainforest, Secondary Rainforest, Freshwater Swamp Forest, Riverine)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Native to Singapore (Endangered (EN))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a tree that can grow up to 27 m tall, and has a dense crown, and upward pointing leaves.
Trunk Its trunk can attain 125 cm in girth size, and has papery flaky bark.
Foliage Its opposite, stalked leaves have leaf blades that are leathery to thickly leathery, drop-shaped, narrowly drop-shaped or oblong, and 2.5–13 by 1.5–6.4 cm. Each leaf blade has a blade margin that is inrolled, has faint venation, 1 vein running parallel to the blade margin, and about 16 pairs of side veins. Young leaves are reddish to golden in colour.
Flowers Its bisexual flowers are about 0.5 cm across and are found in 5–12 cm long flower clusters located at the ends of its twigs or axils of its leaves.
Fruits Its fleshy fruits are greenish white, oblong to drop-shaped, and 1.2–1.4 by 0.7–0.8 cm. Its seeds are somewhat round and about 4 mm across.
Habitat It grows in lowland, and often swamp forests, and by rivers. It occurs locally in Central Catchment Nature Reserve.
Associated Fauna Its flowers are pollinated by insects, and its fruits are eaten by birds.
Cultivation It can be propagated by seed.
Etymology Greek syzygos, joined, referring to the paired leaves of this species; Latin incarnatum, flesh-coloured

Landscaping Features

Landscaping It is suitable for planting in parks and streetscapes for its attractive new leaves, bushy crown, and fruits that attract birds.
Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage, Ornamental Form
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Moist Soils, Waterlogged Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Fertile Loamy Soils
Landscape Uses Roadside Tree / Palm, Parks & Gardens, Riverine

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, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Lots of Water, Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Maintenance Requirements Moderate
Propagation Method Seed


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Leathery
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Red, Yellow / Golden
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Opposite
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Obovate, Lanceolate, Oblong)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality 1 Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Cream / Off-White, Green - Light Green
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Axillary, Terminal
Flower Symmetry Radial
Individual Flower Shape Urceolate / Urn-shaped
Inflorescence Type Panicle

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) - Angiosperms and Gymnosperms Green - Light Green, White
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type 1 Fleshy Fruit
Fruit Type 2 Non-Accessory Fruit

Image Repository



Master ID 29724
Species ID 4033
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: 14 October 2021.