Scientific name: Ophiopogon erectus Aver. & N.TanakaEnglish name: Vietnamese name: Other name:
The epithet refers to the erect stem of this plant.
Herb terrestrial. Stem usually erect, normally unbranched, to about 50 cm high and 1 cm in diam., distally bearing numerous crowded leaves; basal leafless part covered imbricately with pale dull yellowish-brown, partially disintegrated, papyraceous remnants of leaf bases, with almost straight, rigid, woody, grayish prop roots. Leaves numerous, sub-distichous, arching, sessile, (35)40‒50(55) cm long, (0.8)1.2‒1.6(1.8) mm wide; basal part dilated, strongly recurved, winged; wings pale dull light yellowish-brown, scarious, to 8(10) cm long, (3)4‒6(7) mm wide near leaf base, straight, flat and entire along margins, soon disintegrating into fragmentary papyraceous remnants; leaf blades coriaceous, lorate, linear to oblong, or narrowly lanceolate, tapering to obtuse apex, entire along margins, glabrous, adaxially uniformly glossy grass-green, abaxially light green-glaucous, with many parallel narrow whitish stripes; longitudinal veins numerous, indistinct, secondary veins hardly visible. Inflorescence a lax short raceme with dense fascicles of pedicellate flowers in axils of bracts; each fascicle consisting of (3)4‒5(7) flowers; peduncle bending or arching, light green, glaucous, ebracteate, flattened, (3.5)4‒6(8) cm long, (4)4.5‒5(5.5) mm wide; rachis of inflorescence straight or slightly arching, flattened and obscurely ridged, (5)6‒8(10) cm long. Bracts subtending each fascicle of pedicels narrowly triangular, acuminate, pale yellow-brown, scarious, (6)10‒15(16) mm long, (2)3‒4(5) mm wide; the inner bract laterally subtending each pedicel, similar, but much smaller. Pedicels terete, straight, white, (1.5)2‒3(3.5) mm long, 0.5‒0.6 mm in diam., shorter than basal stalky part of perianth. Flowers ascending, suberect, odorless. Perianth 6-lobed distally, campanulate, not widely opening, white, (6)7.5‒8.6(9) mm long (excluding basal stalky part), (7)8‒9(10) mm wide; proximally syntepalous, stalky perianth part, narrowly conoid, slightly curved, (1.5)2‒3(3.5) mm long, 1‒1.5 mm across; perianth segments 6 in 2 whorls, subsimilar, rather fleshy, narrowly ovate, cymbiform, (5.5)6‒7(7.5) mm long, (2)2.2‒3.2(3.5) mm wide, blunt to obscurely obtuse at apex. Stamens 6; anthers dorsifixed, introrse, narrowly conoid, slightly complanate, apically acute with short apiculus, yellowish-green, (3.2)3.5(4) mm long, (1.3)1.4‒ 1.5(1.6) mm wide; filaments shortly cylindrical, fleshy, 0.4 mm long and 0.8 mm across. Pistil 1; ovary inferior, almost flat or slightly convex at apex, internally 1-locular, partitioned into 3 chambers by 3 septa almost touching along inward edges; each chamber adaxially slightly open with narrow longitudinal slit, containing normally 4 ovules on a basal placenta. Style erect, straight to slightly curved, narrowly conic, terete in cross section, (3.8)4‒4.2(4.5) mm long, 0.6‒0.8 mm in diam. at base, slightly exceeding anthers, but shorter than tepals in length; stigma truncate, entire.
Habitat, phenology and conservation status
Terrestrial, erect herb. Usually on shady, very steep rocky slopes in primary broad-leaved evergreen submontane forests on highly eroded crystalline limestone at elevations 800–1000 m a.s.l.
Flowers in September in cultivation.
Locally very common.
IUCN Red List status tentatively assessed as LC.
N. Vietnam: Thanh Hoa province (Thuong Xuan district, Xuan Lien natural reserve).