Pretty Stone Flower
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Pretty Stone Flower
P Native Photo: Ramesh Kadyan
Common name: Pretty Stone Flower
Botanical name: Didymocarpus pulcher    Family: Gesneriaceae (Gloxinia family)
Synonyms: Didymocarpus pulchrus, Didymocarpus pulchra

Pretty Stone Flower is a perennial herb with with rather showy flowers. Flowers are purple, about 2.8 cm; tube cylindric, about 2.2 cm x 7 mm, hairy on the outside; upper lip about 4 mm; lower lip 6.5-8 mm. Pistil is about 2.2 cm, ovary about 1.1 cm. Flowers are borne in 7-9-flowered cymes; flower-cluster-stalk 3-4 cm long, sparsely glandular finely velvet-hairy; bracts free, broadly ovate, about 3 mm, nearly hairless. Flower-stalk is 2-5 mm. Calyx is slightly zygomorphic, 3-4.5 mm; limb indistinctly 2-lipped, 5-lobed; tube 2-3 mm; lobes nearly equal, triangular, 1-2 mm, hairless or outside glandular velvet-hairy, margin entire. Stems are 17-26 cm, densely finely velvet-hairy. Leaves are whorled; leaf-stalk up to 7 cm; leaf blade ovate to broadly ovate, 2-10 x 2-6.2 cm, herbaceous, above sparsely to densely finely velvet-hairy, sparsely yellow glandular, base oblique, wedge-shaped to heart-shaped, margin rounded toothed to sawtoothed, tip pointed; lateral veins 5-7 on each side of midrib. Capsule 2.5-4 cm. Pretty Stone Flower is found in Eastern Himalayas, from Nepal, Bhutan to NE India, at altitudes of 1200-2600 m. Flowering: July-August.

Identification credit: Nongthombam Ullysess Photographed in Arunachal Pradesh.

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