Endangered plants in Indonesia are the subject of an interesting discussion. Indonesia is the country with the large biodiversity in the world. Its because Indonesia is number 3 in the world’s largest rainforest. After Amazon and Congo rainforest. What factors cause the rarity?
Not only become the border of 2 continents (Australia and Asia), its territory has geographic boundaries for endemic species (Wallace, Webber, and Lydekker lines), but also, there are 18,000 islands, which allow for geographical isolation and further enrich the diversity of species
Besides, Indonesia has more than 40,000 flowering plant species. Several common occurrences in Indonesia causing many plants to become endangered are deforestation, overexploitation, damaged habitats, plants that are difficult to reproduce naturally, disease attacks.
Several Aspects Which Causing Scarcity
Deforestation in Indonesia has occurred several decades ago. Because till today deforestation has continued in many areas, this has caused the rainforest as a habitat for various endemic plants to experience a decrease in area and quality. In fact, deforestation initially occurred only for reasons of settlement and distribution of the human population.
Coal mining has made deforestation even more massive. This is getting worse with the conversion of rainforest to oil palm and rubber plantations. Finally, when the forest is gradually disappearing, the diversity of plants will also decrease.
Actually, rarity occurs when the rate of exploitation exceeds the rate of replanting or growing young plants in their habitat. Then the exploitation is continuous because many species also become expensive commodities.
Human activities sometimes also disturbing the habitat where the plants grow. Slowly this causes a decrease in plant population. The easiest example is Javanese edelweiss. The trend of hiking activities in almost all mountains in Indonesia is increasing significantly. Climbers who are not wise, leave a lot of trash on the mountain. The activities during hiking in many cases harm the habitat, such as making fire and land clearing for new hiking areas.
Lamtoro (Leucaena leucocephala) is the most common for Indonesian people. But the plant population decreases dramatically after the invasion of Kutu Loncat (Heteropsylla cubana) in the ’90s. Nowadays it is getting difficult to find it in nature
Long Life Cycle of Plants And Difficulties On Natural Propagation
Actually, the problem of rarity also occurs because it is difficult for some species to reproduce. Such as Rafflesia arnoldi, endemic orchids, and timber wood plants. For these plants, the rarity is more influences by the condition that they were naturally difficult to multiply.
Here Is The List of 55 Endangered Plants In Indonesia:
- 11 Ornamental plants
- 13 Timber Trees
- 10 Medicinal plants
- 19 Fruit plants
- 3 Other plants
List Of 11 Endangered Ornamental Plants In Indonesia
1. Raflesia (Raflesia arnoldi)
Raflesia arnoldi is one of the proud identities of Indonesia. In the world there are only 25 species of Rafflesia and Indonesia has 14 of them. Meanwhile, in Sumatra, there are 11 species that have been found. Including Raflesia arnoldi. It species need humid rainforest to grow and develop.
Fortunately, I have seen directly during my traveling to Bengkulu province. While we were driving through the forests of Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, we saw a sign of “Rafflesia blooming”. but, to see the flowers, at that time we needed to walk for 30 minutes into the forest and see the beauty of the flowers. And finally, I can saw directly one of the endangered plants in Indonesia
2. Javanese Edelweis (Anaphalis javanica )
In fact, the flowers are popular as eternal flowers in Indonesia. We can only find it in the highland. Its species only grow in the elevation above 2000 asl. If you hike the Indonesian mountains, actually you can still easily find these flowers. This flower grows after the change in vegetation from humid tropical forests to savanna.
Javanese edelweiss can grow in the marginal soil condition with a very limited water supply. Their growth rate is very slow. But the flower bloom can be 10 years and that is why we called them eternal flowers.
3. Kantong Semar (Nephentes)
Nephentes only grow in the deep rain forest. Popular among the ornamental plant’s hobbyist as one of the most expensive commodity. In addition, there are about 103 species of Nephentes in the world, and 64 of them are from Indonesia. Their existence in the natural habitat is endangered because of excessive exploitation.
4. Ki Aksara/Jewel Orchid (Macodes sp)
There are many Macodes species now available in the online market. But very difficult to find it in their natural habitat. The leaves pattern is the most beautiful part of the Macodes. Their growth rate is slow and only live in humid conditions but windy in the near peak area.
5. Tebu/Tiger Orchid (Grammatophyllum speciosum)
Tebu orchid is the biggest orchid in the world. The orchids cluster weight can be more than 1 ton and the plant can reach 3 meters in length. Because of the rarity, many scientists did experiments on the propagation. Some laboratories publish that they can propagate the orchid by using the tissue culture method.
6. Bunga Bangkai (Amorphophallus titanium)
There are some species of the genus Amorphophallus in Indonesia. But only Amorphophallus titanium becomes special. When in their habitat, the height of the flowers can reach 5 meters. This species is endemic to Sumatra and its habitat in very humid rainforests.
The flowering period usually in the rainy season. During the dry season, the plants are dormant. Some Amorphophallus also has similar flower but much smaller, and widely distributed in Sumatra and Java.
7. Black Orchid (Coelogyne pandurate)
Although the Genus Coelogyne consists of only about 200 species. but has a wide distribution from the Himalayas to the Pacific. And the most popular is Coelogyne pandurate, the endemic species from East Kalimantan. Is species is unique because has black petal color, and why it called a black orchid.
Currently, it is actually very difficult to find this species in its natural habitat. It happens because exploitation has been going on for a very long time. Almost the entire population now lives only in botanical gardens and collectors.
8. Daun Payung (Johannesteijsmannia altifrons)
Umbrella leaves are now very rare. Perhaps because they need specific growing requirements, then they are affected by deforestation. In the description, this species is a member of the Arecaceae family.
Some literature mentions that their habitat is deep rainforests in North Sumatra and parts of Kalimantan. They have long leaves that can be up to 6 meters long.
9. Larat Orchid (Dendrobium phalaenopsis)
Indonesia has 6000 orchid species from a total of 20.000 all orchid species in the world. Larat is the island name in the southern Maluku province. A small island in the middle of the Arafura sea. Larat Island is the place where we can possibly still find the Larat orchid.
10. Pencil Orchid (Papillionanthe hookerina)
Massive exploitation during the 90’s causing the population of Anggrek Pensil in their natural habitat to decrease significantly. Anggrek Pensil is native plant from Southern Sumatra, in the Bukit Barisan mountains. Its species will grow optimum by symbiotic with wild lily (Crinum asiaticum).
11. Jamrud Orchid (Dendrobium macrophyllum)
Jamrud or emerald in English is the local name for the orchid. It because the flower color is green. Anggrek. Even though they have a wide distribution in Indonesia and a wide range of adaptations, but we can hardly find them in nature. Most of the plants now only available in the orchid stores or collectors.
List of 14 Endangered Timber Trees Plants In Indonesia
1. Damar (Agathis dammara)
In their natural habitat, Damar’s population decrease to 30% in the last 75 years. Damar is one of the native Indonesian plants. Their distribution area includes Sulawesi and Maluku. Damar is on the red list of IUCN as vulnerable species. Today, some islands have Damar plantation because the resin becomes a valuable commodity
2. Ulin (Eusideroxylon zwageri)
Ironwood is the English name for Ulin. This is a tree endemic to East Kalimantan. Because it has long durability as a building material that is very popular in the world, it makes Ironwood in great demand. The rarity is the result of massive logging activities, which was much faster than its growth rate in nature.
3. Tengkawang (Shorea macrophylla)
Also known as Borneo tallow nut in English. Endemic plant from west Kalimantan. The wood is strong for building material. The seeds are the raw material for essential oil. The population of Tengkawang is decreases rapidly because of deforestation and massive exploitation, .
4. Cendana/Sandalwood (Santalum album)
Sandalwood is a native plant from East Nusa Tenggara Province. Because their wood fragrance is very well known in the world, sandalwood has long been used as a raw material for perfume, aromatherapy, and Ayurvedic medicine. Cendana trees need other trees to support their germination stage. Before they can live independently.
5. Bayur (Pterospermum javanicum)
Bayur wood is one of the important timber materials for construction and furniture after Ulin, Ebony, and Teak. Besides, Bayur is also popular as a medicinal plant for dysentery, toothaches, and bleeding treatment. The term Bayur also become the toponym of Kebayoran, an area located in South Jakarta.
6. Akar Karak (Ficus uniglandulosa)
Although Karak Root is native to Indonesia. At this time, there is little information about this plant. It grows in sub-mountainous forests up to 1700 above sea level. This species has synonyms: Ficus copelandii, Ficus subsubulata, and Ficus uniglandulosa.
7. Getah Perca
Also known as Gutta-percha in English. Actually, there are more than 100 species, but Getah Perca is referring to the Palaquium gutta Baill. Nowadays Getah Perca is not common anymore. Even though Gutta-percha is popular for dentistry. Getah perca only popular as karet oblong in Cipetir-Sukabumi West Java. There is a small processing unit operate therefrom the 30’s.
8. Tambesu (Fagraea fragrans)
Tembesu wood actually has high economic, cultural, and prestige value. Especially for the people of South Sumatra, who have been using this wood for a long time as a material for making houses, boats, bridges, and furniture.
9. Kokoleceran/Resak banten (Vatica bantamensis)
Resak Banten is included in the Dipterocarpaceae family. This type becomes the identity of Banten province. Because it has strong and durable wood, this wood is commonly used as a building material and ship construction. Currently, Resak Banten is in conservation status because it is Endangered.
10. Jelutong (Dyera sp)
Jelutong grows in natural forests and swamps in several regions in Indonesia, but mostly in Sumatra and Kalimantan. although it is rare, currently there are efforts to cultivate Jelutong plants. Two types of jelutong are usually cultivated, namely red Jelutong (Dyera costulata) and swamp jelutong (Dyera lowii).
Due to high rates of exploitation such as sap tapping, logging, few replanting activities, and also the increasing of oil palm areas, the population of jelutong is decreasing very fast.
11. Damar Mata Kucing (Shorea javanica)
Currently, Damar Mata Kucing is being cultivated in plantations in the Bukit Barisan Selatan mountains in Krui-Lampung. Even though in the Indonesian language, the word “damar” is to describe the sap produced by several tree species from the genus of Shorea and Hopea. Instead, resin from Damar raja (Agathis dammara) has the trade name copal.
12. Kapur (Dryobalanops aromatica)
Actually, there are historical facts that are contained in a lot of literature about the Kapur. In fact, the Kapur plant is one proof of the interaction between the island of Sumatra and Egyptian civilization.
At that time, Kapur was popular as a material for the mummification of Egyptian kings. The material is a resin that is produced from the wood of this species. At that time, the large port facing the Indian Ocean was Barus Harbor in North Sumatra. So then the name was famous as Kapur Barus.
13. Meranti woods also include in the list of Endangered plants in Indonesia
The name Meranti in this article does not only refer to one species of Meranti but represents all the Dipterocarpaceae families. Currently, almost all species in this family are Endangered trees in Indonesia. Meranti wood is very famous in the world.
To be one of the best woods for construction materials for buildings, ships, and bridges, as well as furniture. In Kalimantan, from the publication, at least there are 9 genera and 268 species from Meranti. Some of the most common genera of Meranti from Indonesia are Shorea, Dipterocarpus, Vatica, Cotylelobium, Anisoptera, Dryobalanops, and Hopea.
List of 9 Endangered Medicinal plants In Indonesia
1. Tabat Barito (Ficus deltoidea)
Traditionally, the Tabat Barito has been known as an aphrodisiac plant. Practically, the leaves and roots are used as medicine to increase fertility. It turns out that from the study results it is known that the leaves contain Sitosterol and the roots contain Cyanophoric
Forest areas along rivers that become their habitat have been degrading. It is because of some activities, such as the timber industry, human settlements, mining, and other needs. these activities have an ecological impact on the population of the Tabat Barito.
2. Wresah (Amomum dealbatum)
Wresah is a member of the Zingiberaceae family. This species is native to Indonesia. It has been a long time since this plant has been a topic of conversation. The problem is, there are still few people who pay attention. Luckily in the online market, some people have now started offering fruit and seeds. this is because this plant has the potential as a medicinal plant.
3. Rau (Dracontomelon mangiferum)
This plant is originally from Kalimantan and Papua. There is currently very little information on Rau. In fact, the young leaves are usually used as food. Meanwhile, ripe fruit is sweet and edible.
Apart from being a building material, wood has long been used as a medicinal plant by local people in West Kalimantan. And from some information, the use of this tree wood can lower blood pressure.
4. Sarang semut (Myrmecodia pendans)
Local peoples at Papua called Sarang Semut. This plant is an epiphyte that sticks to other plants. The plant distribution is widely from Kalimantan, Sumatra, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Cambodia, Malaysia, Cape York, Solomon Islands, and Papua. Sarang Semut has been exploiting for the last decade as medicine because it is rich in phytochemicals,
5. Purwaceng (Pimpinella priatjan)
This species is one of the Endangered plants in Indonesia and is known as the “Viagra of Java”. This species is found in the Dieng highlands – Central Java. Because of the benefit, nowadays many people are cultivating it. If you visit Dieng highland, you can find Purwaceng coffee easily.
6. Pasak Bumi (Eurycoma longifolia)
Other well-known aphrodisiac plants from Indonesia besides Purwaceng are Pasak Bumi. This plant has been popular as one of the strongest herbal medicinal ingredients. It turns out that the benefit of Pasak Bumi has also been using as a traditional medicine in various countries in Southeast Asia. This plant is found in Sumatra and Kalimantan. Because of deforestation, their habitat is decreasing rapidly.
7. Pule (Alstonia Scholaris)
This tree is found in Java and Sumatra. Usually, this tree grows in open areas and areas of mixed primary and secondary forest. moreover, Pule trees are often found as ornamental plants for homes and office buildings.
The phytochemical content in pule wood is used as an antidiabetic, antibacterial, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and has an analgesic effect (pain reliever).
8. Mimba (Azadirachta indica)
Although Mimba is known to have come from India, this species has actually existed on the island of Java since about 1,500 years ago. In fact, the leaves and seeds of Mimba contain secondary metabolites which are useful for agricultural purposes as pesticides and fertilizers. It’s also common for pharmacy. In addition, some of the secondary metabolites contained in it are azadirachtin, Salanin, Meliantriol, Nimbin, and Nimbidine.
9. Secang (Caesalpinia sappan)
Famous because it has long been a traditional medicinal herb from Central Java. The name of Secang is also the name of a sub-district in Central Java. Secang’s wood is used as a herb for herbal drinks. When brewed, water will turn red. Metabolites in secang wood include: bracillin, bracilein, quercetin, rhamnetin, linoleic acid, palmitic acid, and stearic acid.
10. Cemara Sumatra (Taxus Sumatrana)
Taxus is commonly used to be the raw material for cancer drugs for a long time. Paclitaxel compound (TaxolTM) is used to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Some of the factors that make Taxus an Endangered plant are because the growth of Taxus is very slow.
Besides, the seed dormancy period is long, the bark and leaves also exploit on a large scale. These things happened without paying attention to the aspect of sustainability, finally, nowadays Taxus is becoming scarce.
List Of 18 Endangered Fruit Plants In Indonesia
1. Korma Rawa (Phoenix paludosa)
Kurma Rawa grows in the coastal swamps of East Aceh. Based on Government Regulation Number 7 of 1999, this species is a protected species. At least 14 species of the Arecaceae family are protected in Indonesia.
Apart from Aceh, swamp palm also grows around the Ganges river, the Malay peninsula, to the Andaman Islands. This plant is the flora of the identity of the Southeast Aceh district.
2. Kecapi (Sandoricum sp)
This species previously had the name Melia koetjape. Its distribution includes several countries in Southeast Asia, starting from Malaysia, the Philippines, Brunei Darussalam, and Indonesia.
Kecapi can adapt and grow well in the lowlands to the highlands. Actually Indonesia has two types of Kecapi, which can be distinguished by the color of their young leaves. The light green leaf Kecapi (Sandoricum indicum) and the red leaf Kecapi (Sandoricum koetjape).
3. Bacang (Mangifera foetida)
Actually, Bacang has a taste similar to commercial mangoes (Mangifera indica). It smells more fragrant, the flesh is thicker, but has more fiber and is difficult to slice like commercial mangoes. Besides, Bacang has sap which can irritate when it hits the lips. Maybe because of some of these things, finally, Bacang became an Endangered plant.
4. Bisbul (Diospyros discolor)
Bisbul is one of the Endangered plants in Indonesia. Some literature sources, state that this species originated from the Philippines. It grows optimally in the lowlands. The other name of Bisbul is butter fruit in the Melayu language.
Since a long time ago, there is some species collection in the Bogor botanical garden. Probably the fruits are spreading out and grew outside the botanical garden. This may be the reason why in the early 80s, Bisbul was identic with Bogor.
5. Gandaria (Bouea macrophylla)
Gandaria is one of the underutilized fruit plants in Indonesia. This plant, native to southeast Asia. Is in the same family as mango and cashew. Gandaria is actually very famous in the 70s. Has even become one of the places in Jakarta. However, the presence of other commercial fruits gradually reduces f the existence of Gandaria.
Because of its popularity, Gandaria has many names in Indonesia, such as dandoriah (Minangkabau), remieu (Gayo), jatake (Sundanese), barania (Dayak Ngaju), wetes (North Sulawesi), Kalawasa, buwa melawe (Bugis), pao gandari (Madura) , gandaria (Maluku, ramania (Kalimantan), kalawasa, (Makassar).
6. Burahol/ Kepel
Kepel or Burahol Originating from Southeast Asia. Then spread to Malaysia, Indonesia to the Solomon Islands. grows in low to medium land of secondary forest. Currently, Kepel is one of the endangered species.
The scarcity of this plant is more due to the initial assumption that this tree is a royal palace tree so that people are afraid to plant and use its fruit. Kepel fruit is useful as a deodorant. Therefore, the plants were only grown in the Mataram palace. The fruits are used by royal princesses. By consuming ripe fruit, their body and breath will be sweet-smelling.
7. Durian Burung (Durio acutifolius and Durio lanceolatus)
The diversity of the genus Durio still exists in Kalimantan. From several studies reports, finally, more species can be identified. Durian burung habitat is in the Mahakam River basin, Kutai, East Kalimantan. Naturally, they will grow well on the slopes of lowland forests which are usually dominated by meranti trees.
8. Wuni/Buni (Antidesma bunius)
Buni is a rare plant native to Southeast Asia and southern Australia. Spread almost throughout the Southeast Asia region to Australia. grows well in low to highland secondary forest. The fruit is compound, green, and will turn red when ripe. Buni fruit tastes fresh and contains high levels of antioxidant compounds, such as catechins, procyanidin B1, and procyanidin B2, pro-vitamin A, and Vitamin E. Buni fruit can also common to treat digestive problems and can prevent constipation.
9. Lampeni (Ardisia elliptica)
Lampeni can be found on the south coast of the islands of Java and Bali. Previously the exploitation of this species because it was potential as bonsai. Currently, the exploitation of leaves and fruit is increasing significantly because of their medicinal properties. Lampeni leaves and fruit are rich in antioxidants. Its compounds have functioned as an anti-cancer, improve heart function, and increase stamina.
10. Gowok/Kupa (Syzygium polycephalum)
Gowok is a native Indonesian plant. The population was still big in the 80-90s, but with the increasing consumption of commercial fruits, Gowok gradually disappears. Currently, the population in nature is almost extinct. But fortunately, some peoples began to propagate and provide seeds for cultivation purposes.
11. Duwet/Jamblang (Syzygium cumini)
Duwet originally from the eastern part of India. The other local name is Jamblang. A fruit is gradually disappearing because of many commercial fruits that are more common on the market. Jamblang fruit is delicious. Currently, there are no commercially available efforts to cultivate Duwe.
12. Saninten (Castanopsis argentea)
Saninten only produces fruit every two years. Because the fruit is delicious and a favorite for animals. In every fruit season, monkeys usually eat many fruits. So that, actually very few seeds become new plants. The Indonesian Research Institute of Sciences (LIPI) stated that Saninten becomes one of the Endangered plants in Indonesia. This species is protected under Regulation of the Minister of Environment and Forestry number 92 of 2018.
13. Durian daun/kerantongan (Durio oxleyanus)
Kerantongan is a native durian from Southeast Asia. As information, Durian means the fruit with many thorns (duri in the Indonesian language). The fruit has a unique shape, taste, and aroma. Durian daun/kerantongan is found in Kalimantan and parts of eastern Sumatra.
14. Namnam (Cynometra cauliflora)
in the era of the 70s, Nam Nam trees were still easy to find in the forest and the backyard. But now, Namnam whose fruit tastes to be an endangered plant and is difficult to find in Indonesia. People consume fruit that tastes sweet and sour refreshing. Namnam is a member of the Fabaceae family. The plant distribution is in Southeast Asia and India.
15. Wadung (Plectronia didyma)
Information about Wadung is still very limited on the Internet. It is difficult to find a report that discusses Wadung comprehensively. From some of the information, Wadung still grows in Banyuwangi Regency, East Java. local peoples use Wadung fruit as a seasoning for Sayur Asam. Some consume it fresh.
16. Kemang (Mangifera kemanga)
Kemang is in same genus with binjai (Mangifera caesia) and mango (Mangifera indica). Possibly, many plants grew in one area called Kemang in South Jakarta. However, as same with several other fruit plants, currently Kemang is difficult to find. One of the reasons is the aroma and taste that are inferior to other commercial mangoes. Young Kemang leaves were previously popular as fresh vegetables for Sundanese people.
17. Kedoya (Dysoxylum gaudichaudianum)
Currently, Kedoya is also used as a name in Kebun Jeruk District, West Jakarta. However, nowadays, few people know that Kedoya is actually the name of a fruit that used to grow in the area.
Kedoya is a member of the Meliaceae family which is originally from Australia. Its spread in Indonesia is only in a few islands in eastern Indonesia, Java Island to small islands in the Sunda Strait.
18. Menteng (Baccaurea racemose)
Menteng is the name of an elite area in Central Jakarta. Currently, not many people know that Menteng comes from the name of the fruit plant. One of the big rivers in West Java, named Cikapundung, also comes from the name of this fruit in Sundanese (Kapundung). The distribution is very wide, especially in Southeast Asia. Perhaps because the fruit tastes are sour, peoples didn’t choose it as regular fruits. And it causes them to become rare today
19. Lobi-lobi (Flacourita Inermis)
Lobi-lobi (Flacourita Inermis), distributed throughout the Asian region. One of Indonesia’s native fruit plants. But now it’s hard to find it. This is because the tastes sour, so it has not become the first choice. However, the Lobi-lobi fruits have high phenolic and anthocyanin content, thus providing benefits for the health. Usually, the fruit is processed into a mix of salad, Manisan, syrup, pickles.
List Of 3 Endangered Other plants In Indonesia
1. Bertan (Eugeissona utilis)
Bertan is an endemic palm originating from East Kalimantan. The mossy mountain slope is the best place where we can possibly find Bertan in Paser, East Kalimantan. Local people consume sago, which comes from the tree trunk, as the main food. The food that was common before they know rice.
2. Ganyong (Canna edulis)
In the ’70s, Ganyong’s processed food was still easy to find. Ganyong is the potential to become an alternative carbohydrate source. The tuber has a high carbohydrate content. Ganyong can be interesting for millennials as an alternative food menu.
3. Terubuk (Sacharum edule)
Terubuk has the same genus as sugar cane. The flowers are common to be delicious and made into vegetables. Terubuk flowers are soft, just like tofu. When cooked, it tastes close to egg glare. Generally, terubuk flowers are cooked wrapped in banana leaves, or sautéed with a few other vegetables.
always love to learn from nature. Passionate on studying plants in some aspects: the DNA, Identification, propagation, and their uses