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Barringtonia papuana


Barringtonia papuana Lauterb.

Family Name: Lecythidaceae
Synonyms: Barringtonia josephstaalensis
Common Name: Kun-job, Sehsegeh

Barringtonia papuana, also known as Kun-job in Maian, has showy flowers with numerous filamentous stamens that are pink or creamy yellow. The bark is used as fish poisons as it contains toxic saponins.


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Common Names
Species Summary

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Small (6m-15m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 10 m


Native Distribution Papua New Guinea
Native Habitat Terrestrial
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Non-native

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form It is a small tree, up to 10 m tall.
Foliage Clustering at the end of the branches, leaves are lanceolate (47 – 126 cm long and 1.5 – 8 cm wide) and papery, with tooth margin. There are 70 – 95 pairs of secondary veins which forms loops near the margin. Petiole is 1.5 – 12 cm long.
Flowers Inflorescence occurs at the trunk or branches. Each inflorescence is about 3 – 14 cm long, and comprises of 10 flowers. Each flower (2 – 3 cm long) comprises of 4 white petals, numerous creamy pink stamens, and a ring like disc.  
Fruit Fruit is ovoid (6 cm long and 3 cm wide), ripens yellowish brown with flattened hairs, and contains 1 seed.
Habitat It is found along rivers in primary and secondary forest.
Ethnobotanical Uses Others: The bark is used as a fish poison by Maian natives.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Foliage
Landscape Uses Coastal

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna)
Seed or Spore Dispersal Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate
Rootzone Tolerance Well-Drained Soils


Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Red

Image Repository



Master ID 32829
Species ID 7242
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: 20 August 2021.