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Flacourtia rukam


Flacourtia rukam Zoll. & Moritzi

Family Name: Salicaceae
Synonyms: Flacourtia edulis Griff., Flacourtia euphlebia Merr., Flacourtia megaphylla Ridl., Flacourtia peninsula Elm., Flacourtia sulcata Elm.
Common Name: Indian Prune, Rukam Manis, 大叶刺篱木


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 Irregular
Maximum Height 20 m


Native Distribution Hainan, Indochina, southern Thailand through Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Brunei to Papua New Guinea
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Primary Rainforest, Secondary Rainforest, Freshwater Swamp Forest, Riverine)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical, Sub-Tropical / Monsoonal
Local Conservation Status Native to Singapore (Vulnerable (VU))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a tree up to 20 m tall.
Foliage Its alternate, stalked leaves have leathery to almost leathery leaf blades that are red to brown when young, egg-shaped-oblong, oval to oblong-lance-shaped, 6.5–18 by 3–9 cm, and with toothed margins.
Flowers Its flowering clusters are finely covered with hair and found at the leaf axils. They bear few greenish-yellow flowers.
Fruit Its stalked fruits are globose to depressed globose, or drop-shaped, turning pink or dark red when ripe, 2–2.5 cm wide, and topped by a ring of styles.
Habitat It grows in evergreen primary and secondary forests, often along rivers, up to 2,100 m altitude.
Associated Fauna Its flowers are insect-pollinated. It is the butterfly host plant and caterpillar food plant for the Leopard butterfly (Phalanta phalantha phalantha), Rustic butterfly (Cupha erymanthis) and Vagrant butterfly (Vagrans sinha sinha).
Etymology Latin flacourtia, commemorating Etienne de Flacourt (1607–1660), the director of the French East India company; Javanese rukam, the vernacular name of this species
Ethnobotanical Uses Edible Plant Parts : Edible Fruits
Food (Fruit or Vegetable): The plant is cultivated for its edible fruits for jam.
Medicinal: The juice of the fruits used for dysentery, dysmenorrhea, and diarrhea. The juice of the leaves is applied to inflamed eyelids.
Timber & Products: The wood is hard and used to make pestles or shafts in the Philippines.

Landscaping Features

Landscaping It is suitable for parks.
Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage, Ornamental Fruits
Landscape Uses Parks & Gardens, Riverine
Usage Hazard - Cons Spines/Thorns - Stem/Branch

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Butterfly Host Plant (Leaves)
Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna)
Seed or Spore Dispersal Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Rootzone Tolerance Moist Soils, Well-Drained Soils, Fertile Loamy Soils
Pest(s) Chewing Insects
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Leathery
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Brown, Red
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Alternate
Foliar Attachment to Stem Petiolate
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Oval, Oblong, Elliptical, Lanceolate)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Serrate / Toothed
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 3.0 (Tree - Intermediate Canopy)

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Green - Light Green
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Axillary

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) Pink, Red
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type Fleshy Fruit , Non-Accessory Fruit

Image Repository



Master ID 1628
Species ID 5182
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: 07 October 2022.