Imphal, March 3: A rare small flowering shrub which was known to come from Eastern Himalayas, Bangladesh and Burma, was photographed for the first time in Manipur.
The small flowering shrub, identified as East-Himalayan Eranthemum (Eranthemum strictum), was photographed by Sobhapati Samom at Barak Waterfall, a popular tourist spot in Tamenglong district recently.
Informing that this plant has never been reported from Manipur, Tabish Qureshi of one of India’s most popular flower websites www.flowersofindia.net said that it is only known from Assam, Meghalaya, Bangladesh and Myanmar.
On the question of sighting similar photos of the said flowering shrub on the web, he said that they are different (from Eranthemum strictum) but not easy to distinguish.
East-Himalayan Eranthemum is about 3-4 feet in height, slightly covered with short hair. Flowers-spikes are solitary, erect, from one to two feet long, branch sharply 4-sided, almost 4-winged, according to www.flowersofindia.net, which currently has a repository of over 6,000 identified flowers.
Flowers are large, dark-blue in colour, opposite in alternate pairs which become remote as the spike elongates. Petals are obovate, flat at the tip, spreading and very pale below. Leaves are lance-shaped, obscurely round-toothed. Flowers are borne in spikes at branch-ends, slender and much elongated.
Leaves are about 10 cm long, pointed at each end, their margins somewhat curled and round-toothed, smooth and shining, of a peculiar grayish-green color above, very pale, with prominent hairy and net-veined nerves and veins below.
East-Himalayan Eranthemum is a native flower of Eastern Himalayas, Bangladesh and Burma. The flower blossoms during January-March, the website said.