Monday, September 28, 2015

Miniature Holly - Malpighia coccigera

Bengali Name : ?
Common Name : Miniature holly, Singapore holly, Dwarf holly.
Botanical Name : Malpighia coccigera
Family : Malpighiaceae

Again another foreign flower that has suited nicely with the weather of our country Bangladesh (বাংলাদেশ). It is native to the Caribbean region. The name of the plant is Dwarf holly or Miniature holly. Binomial name of the plant is Malpighia coccigera and belongs to the plant family Malpighiaceae. The genus name Malpighia honors the 17th century Italian biologist Marcello Malpighi.

Dwarf holly is a shrubby evergreen plant that mainly grows (by gardeners) in a group rather standalone. The leafs are oppositely arranged and initial leafs are glossy and round shaped. But at the later stage the the leafs become dark green and thorny at leaf margin. As the leafs are small and thorny (like the holly plants), that's why it is known as Dwarf holly or Miniature holly plant.

This low growing plant brings numerous small white or pinkish-white flowers on it, but yet they are not showy. Because the petals of the flower are having much gap in between. Shape of the petal is round (similar to the leaf) with long petal-stalk (like a spoon). That's why the petals (or flowers) are often remain overlooked despite of having white color.

The petals are are heavily toothed at the margin. Dwarf holly flowers are having a long stalk that is having reddish color. The bract of the flower is green. Flower has a set of stamens with yellow filaments. This flower brings berry like fruits but I have never seen those (or may be I didn't notice!). Fruits are a favorite meal for the birds.

This is an ornamental flowering plant. Gardeners use to prune the tree and give a shape to the group of plants. Also, the original plant looks like a small version of a plant. That's why it is a popular plant for Bonsai.

Photos of this article were taken from Bangladesh (বাংলাদেশ) as mentioned below:
1) March 2015: Moynamoti, Comilla (ময়নামতি, কুমিল্লা).

This article has written by Lonely Traveler,
for the blog