Ariopsis peltata is an annual herb distributed in India and Western malaysia. It has beautiful heart shaped ‘peltate’ leaves, hence the species name – peltata. Peltate means the petiole is attached to the middle of the leaf instead of the margin like most plants have.
These plants grow in gregarious groups and it is a sight to behold! Beautiful shield shaped leaves covering a cliff on the roadside.
The plant belongs to the family Araceae. A personal favorite for me 😉.
The plant is usually terrestrial, but can also grow as epiphytes and lithophytes when conditions are favorable.
It has a globose tuber and the leaves and inflorescence rise from the tuber which lies under soil surface. The petioles are 8 to 20 cm long. Peduncle is 2 to 5 cm long and solitary.
The inflorescence is spadix. The spathe yellow or white and is about 3 cm long. The spike is about 2.5 cm long with depressed cavities for androecium. The male flowers are present towards the upper half of the spike while the female flowers are present towards the lower half of the spike. The stigma is 4 lobed.
Fruits are berries, 3 to 6 angled.
Seeds many, linear oblong, ridged longitudinally.