Parrot-Billed Balsam   
Foto info
Parrot-Billed Balsam
P Native Photo: Shrishail Kulloli
Common name: Parrot-Billed Balsam
Botanical name: Impatiens jerdoniae    Family: Balsaminaceae (Balsam family)
Synonyms: Impatiens parasitica Bedd.

Parrot-Billed Balsam is a fleshy herb found growing on tree trunks or rocks, with stems tumid, hairless, green or purple. Flowers are borne singly or in two's, 3.5-5 cm long; flower-cluster-stalks 2.5-8 cm long, green, stout. Lateral is sepals lanceshaped, tapering, green. Lip is rounded, overlapping, laterally compressed, scarlet, spur swollen, wrinkled, sac-like, very large, appearing like parrot's beak. Standard is yellow, round, apiculate, narrowly keeled at back. Wings are 2-lobed; lobes rounded, overlapping, concealed under lip. Leaves are few, alternate, elliptic, pointed, sawtoothed, 5-8 cm long, deep green; nerves few with glandular cilia at base and on top of stout leaf-stalk. Capsules are ellipsoid. Parrot-Billed Balsam is endemic W. Ghats at altitudes of 800-1500 m, found in Karnataka (Kodagu and Brahmagiri), Tamil Nadu (Nilgiris, Anamalais & Pulneys) and Kerala (Palakkad). Flowering: August-December.

Identification credit: Shrishail Kulloli Photographed in Kerala.

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