Nepenthes macrovulgaris

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Nepenthes macrovulgaris
Nepenthes macrovulgaris upper.jpg
Aerial traps of a narrow-pitchered form of N. macrovulgaris growing at 100–150 m above sea level in Sabah, Borneo
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Nepenthaceae
Genus: Nepenthes
Species: N. macrovulgaris
Binomial name
Nepenthes macrovulgaris
J.R.Turnbull & A.T.Middleton (1988)[2]

Nepenthes macrovulgaris (/nɪˈpɛnθz ˌmækrvʌlˈɡɛərɪs/; from Greek/Latin: macro = large, vulgaris = common, usual), or the serpentine pitcher-plant,[4] is a tropical pitcher plant endemic to Borneo. It is a lowland plant that typically grows at altitudes ranging from 300 to 1200 m in sub-montane forest clearings and mossy forest. Its range is restricted to ultramafic habitats, including Mount Kinabalu, Mount Tambuyukon, the Danum Valley, the Tawai Range, the Meliau Range and Mount Silam, all in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. Pitchers grow to around 25 cm high and range in colour from green to brown, with the speckled form being the most common.[5][6][7]


Nepenthes macrovulgaris is most closely related to N. hirsuta and N. hispida, and may be difficult to distinguish from them. Botanists Matthew Jebb and Martin Cheek suggest that N. macrovulgaris is also related to N. philippinensis, a species endemic to Palawan in the Philippines.[8][9]

Morphological differences between N. macrovulgaris, N. hirsuta and N. hispida (Steiner, 2002 after Clarke, 1997)
N. macrovulgaris N. hirsuta N. hispida
leaves charteous ≤30 cm, oblong to linear leaves coriaceous ≤20 cm, canaliculate-spathulate or obovate leaves coriaceous sessile ≤28 cm, oblanceolate-oblongate
apex acute to obtuse apex acute or roundish apex acuminate-obtuse, often unequal
base attenuate into a winged petiole, wings wider towards the base, clasping stem for about ½ its diameter, not decurrent base attenuate, forming laterally flattened, semi-amplexicaul sheath base attenuate, amplexicaul and often decurrent onto the internode
longitudinal veins: 2-3 on each side longitudinal veins not prominent longitudinal veins: 3 on each side
adult pitchers and stem glabrous, young pitchers with short, thin hairs stem densely covered with long brown hairs, not as bristle-like as those of N. hispida stem very densely covered with bristle-like purple-grey hairs


Turnbull and Middleton, who described the species in 1988, explain that they chose the specific epithet macrovulgaris to:[4]

[...] indicate a relatively large plant and to indicate that no single characteristic uniquely distinguishes this taxon from all others. The suffix vulgaris does not indicate that this species is either common or ordinary. On the contrary, it is quite striking. The epithet is an irregular combination of Greek and Latin. The name was used in the field to identify living material which was distributed to growers and this informal name is now commonly used by collectors. We feel that to change the name now would create unnecessary confusion.

Natural hybrids[edit]

Climbing stems of N. macrovulgaris

The following natural hybrids involving N. macrovulgaris have been recorded.


  1. ^ Schnell, D.; Catling, P.; Folkerts, G.; Frost, C.; Gardner, R.; et al. (2000). "Nepenthes macrovulgaris". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2000: e.T40114A10314640. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2000.RLTS.T40114A10314640.en. Retrieved 2 April 2017. 
  2. ^ Turnbull, J.R. & A.T. Middleton 1988. A new species of Nepenthes from Sabah, Malaysia. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 96(4): 351–358. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8339.1988.tb00690.x
  3. ^ Kurata, S. 1976. Nepenthes of Mount Kinabalu. Sabah National Parks Publications No. 2, Sabah National Parks Trustees, Kota Kinabalu.
  4. ^ a b Phillipps, A. & A. Lamb 1996. Pitcher-Plants of Borneo. Natural History Publications (Borneo), Kota Kinabalu.
  5. ^ a b c d Clarke, C.M. 1997. Nepenthes of Borneo. Natural History Publications (Borneo), Kota Kinabalu.
  6. ^ Steiner, H. 2002. Borneo: Its Mountains and Lowlands with their Pitcher Plants. Toihaan Publishing Company, Kota Kinabalu.
  7. ^ Phillipps, A., A. Lamb & C.C. Lee 2008. Pitcher Plants of Borneo. Second Edition. Natural History Publications (Borneo), Kota Kinabalu.
  8. ^ Cheek, M.R. & M.H.P. Jebb 1999. Nepenthes (Nepenthaceae) in Palawan, Philippines. Kew Bulletin 54(4): 887–895. doi:10.2307/4111166
  9. ^ Schlauer, J. 2000. "Literature Reviews" (PDF).  Carnivorous Plant Newsletter 29(2): 53.
  10. ^ McPherson, S.R. 2009. Pitcher Plants of the Old World. 2 volumes. Redfern Natural History Productions, Poole.

Further reading[edit]