Bicolor Skullcap
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Bicolor Skullcap
ative Photo: Thingnam Anjulika
Common name: Bicolor Skullcap • Manipuri: ꯌꯦꯅꯥꯈꯠ Yenakhat • Nepali: निलो भुत्ते घाँस Nilo butte ghans, दाम्पाते Daampaate • Mizo: Phurthakhlo
Botanical name: Scutellaria discolor    Family: Lamiaceae (Mint family)
Synonyms: Scutellaria indica

Bicolor Skullcap is a perennial shrub, with 1 to few stems, 1-2 ft tall. Flowers are blue, tubular 2-lipped, in long slender loose leafless spikes, 8-25 cm long. Flowers are 1.3-1.8 cm long, with a slender, curved tube, opening into two lips. Upper lips is entire, hooded, and the lower one is broad, 3-lobed, often paler in color. Sepals cup is 2 mm long, enlarging in fruit and covering the nutlets. The common name of the plant comes from the sepal cups which look like medieval helmets. Elliptic leaves are mostly at the base, with blunt-toothed margins, 2-8 cm long, long stalked, often purple on the underside. Bicolor Skullcap is found on shady banks in the Himalayas, from Uttarakhand to NE India, at altitudes of 700-2400 m. Flowering: July-November.
Medicinal uses: Juice of the plant is applied to wounds between the toes caused by prolonged walking barefooted in muddy water during the rainy season. Juice of the root, about 4 teaspoons twice a day, is given to treat indigestion and gastric troubles.

Identification credit: Prashant Awale Photographed in Imphal, Manipur.

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