Kaempferia rotunda L.
Sp. pl. 1: 3 (1753).|
Synonyms Kaempferia longa Jacq. (1798).
Vernacular names Round-rooted galangal (En). Indonesia: kunci pepet, kunir putih (Javanese), temu rapet (eastern Sumatra). Malaysia: kencur, kunyit putih, temu putih (Peninsular). Philippines: gisol na bilog (general). Thailand: waan nonlap (Chiang Mai), waan haao non (Ratchaburi), ueang din (northern). Vietnam: c[aar]m dia la, ng[ar]i m[as]u.
Distribution Possibly native to Indo-China, but nowadays cultivated almost throughout tropical Asia, mainly as an ornamental but especially in South-East Asia also for medicinal purposes; regularly escaping from cultivation.
Uses In Indonesia, rhizomes are used to treat abdominal illness; the watery little corms are considered cooling. In the Philippines, rhizomes are used internally to treat gastric complaints, and externally, mixed with oil, as a cicatrizant. They are also used in perfumery and as a means to preserve cloth from insects. Leaves and rhizomes are eaten fresh or cooked as a vegetable and used in cosmetic powder and as a food flavouring agent.
Observations A small herb; leaves (2-)3-5, erect, petiolate, sheaths 7-24 cm long, blade oblong-lanceolate to elliptical, (7-)12-25(-36) cm x 4-7(-11) cm, gradually acuminate, glabrous above, puberulous below, often flamed or marked; inflorescence appearing before the leaves on stems with rudimentary leaves, on a well-developed peduncle, 4-16-flowered; calyx 3-7 cm long, white or greenish, corolla white, interruptedly striped-punctate, tube 3.5-7 cm long, lobes 3.5-7 cm long, labellum obcordate, divided halfway or further, 4-7 cm x 2-4 cm, purple with yellowish midrib, other staminodes elliptical to linear, 3-5 cm long, white or lilac, fertile stamen 0.8-2.5 cm long, connective 2-4-lobed. Kaempferia rotunda grows well in teak forest, open lower montane forest, old bamboo forest, but also in open grassland, up to 1300 m altitude.
Author: Halijah Ibrahim
Source of This Article:
Ibrahim, H., 1999. Kaempferia rotunda L.In: de Padua, L.S., Bunyapraphatsara, N. and Lemmens, R.H.M.J. (Editors). Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12(1): Medicinal and poisonous plants 1. Backhuys Publisher, Leiden, The Netherlands, p. 335
Ibrahim, H., 1999. Kaempferia rotunda L.[Internet] Record from Proseabase. de Padua, L.S., Bunyapraphatsara, N. and Lemmens, R.H.M.J. (Editors).
PROSEA (Plant Resources of South-East Asia) Foundation, Bogor, Indonesia. http://www.proseanet.org.
Accessed from Internet: 15-May-2021