Foto info
ntroduced Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Jacquinia
Botanical name: Jacquinia macrocarpa    Family: Primulaceae (Primrose family)
Synonyms: Jacquinia aurantica

Jacquinia is a small tree or a dense, thick-stemmed shrub that is native to West Indies and Mexico. Leaf arrangement is helically alternate, with leaves that can be described either as hard and tough or leathery. The needle-like leaf tip is a fibrous extension of the midvein. The flower of jacquinia is both beautiful, although only about 1 cm across, and strange. At first glance, there appear to be ten orange-red petals, but botanically only five are petals. The five smaller ones are petal-like stamens, called staminodia. Around the short style in the center, five fertile stamens conceal a pool of nectar within the flower tube around the ovary. Almost unnoticeable are the thin, roundish sepals, which overlap and closely surround the ovary before it forms as a marble-sized fruit. The genus Jacquinia was named by Linnaeus (1763) to honour Nicolaus Joseph Jacquin, a Dutch-born Austrian botanist who, in 1760, published on plants that he collected in the West Indies using the then new system of binomial nomenclature.

Photographed in India International Centre, Delhi.
Identification credit: Nandan Kalbag • Is this flower misidentified? If yes,