Melastome Clearweed
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Melastome Clearweed
ative Photo: Anurag Sharma
Common name: Melastome Clearweed • Malayalam: Narali • Tangkhul: Shatkharhan
Botanical name: Pilea melastomoides    Family: Urticaceae (Nettle family)
Synonyms: Urtica melastomoides, Pilea trinervia

Melastome Clearweed is a hairless subshrubs so named because of the similarity of its leaves with Melastomes. Leaves are up to 19 cm long, 9 cm wide, ovate, long-pointed, rounded at base, toothed, 3-ribbed. Nervules are parallel, velvet-hairy along nervules below, lineoles crowded. Leaf-stalks are unequal in opposite pairs, up to 10 cm long. Flowers are borne in panicles in leaf axils. Male panicle are 10 cm across, flowers stalkless, 4 mm across, tepals 4, ovate, pointed, stamens 4. Female panicle are 2 cm across, shortly stalked. Flowers are smaller than male flowers, tepals are 1 mm long, stigmas 3-fid. Seed-pods are 1 mm across, biconvex. Melastome Clearweed is found in Indo-Malaysia. In India it is found in South India and East Himalaya, at altitudes of 700-1800 m. Flowering: August-December.

Identification credit: Pudji Widodo Photographed at Chikamagalur-Kemmangudi Road, Karnataka.

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