Kashmir Swertia
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Kashmir Swertia
P Native Photo: Anzar Khuroo
Common name: Kashmir Swertia
Botanical name: Swertia kashmirensis    Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian family)

Kashmir Swertia is a newly discovered (2022) perennial herb, 50-80 cm tall. Flowers are 4-merous or 5-merous, actinomorphic, 15-50 in number, open flower diameter 2.2-2.3 cm, bracteate, flower-stalks 1.5-2.5 cm long. Petals are yellowish, ovate, entire, blunt, 10-10.5 x 4-4.5 mm; pair of nectaries near base of the petal, oblong-oval, 1.2-1.3 x 0.5-0.7 mm; fimbriae 3-5 per nectary, 2-3 mm long, restricted on lower part of the nectary towards base of the petal. Sepals are lanceshaped, entire, pointed, 8-10 x 3-4 mm. Stamens are 6-7 mm long; anthers 2-2.5 mm, bilobed, obovate, dorsifixed, splitting longitudinally. Roots are rhizomatous with fibrous roots, 6.5-7.5 x 1.5-2.3 cm. Stem is erect, simple, hollow, hairless, cylindrical in outline. Basal leaves are 5-7, spoon-shaped-elliptic, margin entire, tip blunt, 8-16.5 x 2-4.5 cm; leaf-stalk 6-9.5 cm long. Stem leaves are in 6-8 pairs, opposite, stalkless, free at base, or rarely fused up to 0.2-0.4 cm, elliptic-lanceshaped, entire, pointed, 2-8.5 x 1-2.5 cm, leaf size gradually decreases upwards. Inflorescence paniculate cyme, 17-22 cm long.Fruit capsule with persistent sepal-cup, spherical, 8.5-9.5 x 5-7 mm, septicidal dehiscence. Seeds 45-50 per capsule, round-oblong, winged, dark blackish, flattened, 3.5-3.7 x 2.5-3.5 mm, wings 0.8-1.2 mm wide. Kashmir Swertia is currently known only from Bangus valley, Kashmir. Flowering: August-September;

Identification credit: Anzar Khuroo Photographed in Bangus, Kupwara distt., Kashmir.

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