Narrowleaf Indigo   
Foto info
Narrowleaf Indigo
ative Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Narrowleaf Indigo • Hindi: Torki, रत्नमाला Ratnamala, रतनजोत Ratanjot • Marathi: लाल गोधडी Lal godhadi, Pandarphalli • Telugu: Gudlaku • Bengali: Bhangra, Motiyari • Gujarati: Jinkigali
Botanical name: Indigofera linifolia    Family: Fabaceae (Pea family)
Synonyms: Hedysarum linifolium, Indigofera linifolia var. campbelli

Narrowleaf Indigo is slender much-branched prostrate or erect annual or bushy perennial, growing to 50 cm tall. Branches are velvety hairy with appressed hairs. Nearly stalkless leaves are narrow, linear to oblong-lanceolate, 20-45 x 2-4 mm, sharp-tipped, appressed-pubescent on both surfaces. Inflorescence is a spike-like raceme, sitting on a short peduncle. The raceme is to 3 cm long, 2-10-flowered; bracts broad-lanceolate, 1 mm long, acute. Bright red flowers are 3-8 mm long. Sepal tube at first pitcher-shaped 3-4 mm long, later bell-shaped. Sepals linear, longer than the tube. Petals are bright-red, with the standard petal circular, one-quarter longer than the calyx, wings and keel shorter. Pod globular, 1.5-2 mm, apiculate, appressed-white-tomentose, 1-seeded; seeds globular, 1.5 mm, brown-black, smooth. The plant is used as famine food. The plant is threshed, and the seeds ground into flour for making bread - either unmixed or combined with other cereals e.g. bajra (millet) or jowar.

Photographed at Hadsar fort, Maharashtra.
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