Sang Leaf, This Unique Plant Found in North Sumatra. A new type of flora with giant leaves was discovered in North Sumatra (North Sumatra). The width of the leaves reaches 6 meters. The name leaves. It has the scientific name Johannestijsmania altifrons.
This endemic plant can only be found in the Aras area, an area in Langkat Regency, North Sumatra, which is included in the Gunung Leuser National Park area. Sang leaves can be found at an altitude of 85-175 meters above sea level, and are found on hillsides with a slope of 45 degrees, to steep slopes with a slope of more than 60 degrees.
Apart from North Sumatra, this unique sang leaf is also found in Thailand, Malaysia, Sarawak, West Kalimantan and Sumatra, Indonesia. What’s unique is that the leaves have a thorny side. The shape is wide in the middle and tapered at the base and tip. Due to the above normal size of the leaves, people used to often use the leaves as roofs for houses or huts in the fields.
At first glance, the leaves seem to consist only of leaves without stem support. This is because the short stems are often hidden in the ground, so only the leaves appear to be sticking out to the surface.
The appearance is quite attractive with a shiny green color similar to coconut leaves, and the whole plant looks like a diamond. The surface of the leaves is streaked and the edges are serrated. It is not surprising that this plant is also used as an ornamental plant by several ornamental plant lovers.
Sang leaves were first discovered in the interior of Sumatra in the early 19th century by a Dutch botany professor named Teijsman or Elias Teymann Johannes. In accordance with the name of its discoverer, the leaves were then given the Latin name Johannestijsmania altifrons.
This plant is one of four species belonging to the genus Johannestijsmania, a type of areca nut or palm (Arecaceae) that grows only in the forest areas of Southeast Asia.
Sang leaves have many names. In Indonesia it is also called umbrella leaf, elephant leaf, oil leaf (North Sumatra), salo leaf (Riau). In Malaysia it is known as sal, in Thailand it is called bang soon, and in England it is called joey palm, diamond joey palm, or umbrella leaf palm.
Its unique nature of not being able to tolerate heat also means that this plant only grows in places that are not exposed to direct sunlight, therefore it is generally found in the shade of other trees. Usually shady trees, grouped to form groves.
Umbrella leaves are plants that grow singly. The name giant leaf is taken from the very large size of the plant’s leaves. The length of the giant leaves is between 3 and 6 meters with a width of one meter. When viewed from a distance, this plant appears to have no stem. The canopy consists of 20-30 leaves. The leaves are 2.5 m long with hard, spiny edges. The lobes are small and have veins at the base of the leaves. The color of the giant leaves is green with serrated leaf edges. The texture of giant leaves is very strong and the surface is shiny like coconut leaves. The shape of the giant leaves is tapered at the tip and base of the leaf and widens towards the middle of the leaf. The inflorescences are in the form of panicles, located in the leaf axils, with an upright shape. The base is in the form of a sheath, measuring 40 × 20 cm. The bracts are 5-6 in number, melanose, measuring 10–20 cm. The flowers are white, soft, 5 mm long, measuring 4 × 2 mm. The fruit is leathery, with a rough surface. The diameter is 4 cm, covered with conical cork lumps.
Giant leaf plants cannot stand being placed under direct sunlight, therefore this plant is often found growing among dense trees. This plant, which is a type of palm, grows in groups to form clumps. Even though it has seeds, this plant more often reproduces using shoots. because the seed coat is covered by a thick and hard skin. New giant leaf plants will grow sticking out of the ground. The existence of giant plants is currently decreasing due to the many forest fires so that the trees that provide shelter for these plants are also decreasing. The roots of giant leaf plants are fibrous roots like other palm plants.
Scientific Classification: Kingdom: Plantae; Division: Magnoliophyta; Order: Arecales; Family: Arecaceae; Genus: Johannesteijsmannia; Species: Johannesteijsmannia altifrons. Synonym: Teysmannia altifrons.