Flora of the Hawaiian Islands
Dicotyledon Literature for Thespesia populnea
Lorence & Wagner, 2020.
   Malvaceae -- The Cacao, Linden, Mallow Family Bibliography
      Thespesia populnea

Common name(s): milo, portia tree
General Information
DistributionPantropical in littoral habitats, although apparently native only to the Old World.In the Hawaiian Islands, indigenous to Ni`ihau, Kaua`i, O`ahu, Moloka`i, Lana`i, Maui, Hawai`i.

Click here for detailed USGS map by Jonathan Price
Arborescent shrub or tree, 5‒10(‒25) m tall, bark gray, shallowly fissured.
Leaves petiolate; blade shiny yellowish green, ovate to deltate or orbicular, 5‒22 cm long, 4‒15 cm wide, glabrous, usually obscurely glandular punctate, abaxial surface with an elongate gland on midrib near base, apex usually acuminate, base cordate; petiole usually more than ½ as long as blade, 3‒16.5 cm long.
Inflorescences spreading, pedicels thick, shorter than subtending petiole; involucral bracts 3, lanceolate, 4‒17 mm long, early deciduous. Flowers with calyx cuplike, essentially truncate, 8‒12 mm long at anthesis, enlarging and flattening in fruit; petals yellow, usually with a maroon spot at base, fading reddish yellow, obliquely obovate, crinkled apically, 4‒7 cm long; staminal column included, yellow, to 3 cm long, densely antheriferous for most of its length; style 5-grooved and twisted.
Fruit depressed globose, leathery, obscurely 5-angled, 2.5‒4.5 cm in diameter, dehiscing irregularly with age.
Seeds grayish brown, obovoid-trigonous, 8‒15 mm long, densely brown pubescent or glabrate.
2n = 24, 26, 28.
The wood of this species is durable and used for construction and carving.
Nancy Khan