Phen Kamal
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Phen Kamal
ative Photo: Saksham Maria
Common name: Phen Kamal • Dogri: ghuggi, jogi booti, jogi phull, jogipadshah • Hindi: फेन कमल Fen Kamal • Kashmiri: Jogi Padsha
Botanical name: Saussurea simpsoniana    Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Synonyms: Saussurea sacra, Aplotaxis simpsoniana

Fen Kamal is a very curious looking woolly haired high altitude plant which looks like a hairy, woolly mound. When it flowers, the purple flower-heads in a domed cluster, appear exposed above the wool. This feature distinguishes it from Kasturi Kamal. Otherwise it is a very variable plant and can be confused with some related species. Stems grow 5-8 cm high, with the leaves nearly fully concealed in the protective wool. It can also be found growing to 15 cm high, with the leave visible. Leaves are linear-lanceshaped, up to 10 cm, but generally shorter, coarse toothed or shallowly lobed, covered with woolly hairs. Phen Kamal is found in the Himalayas, from Kashmir to Sikkim, at altitudes of 3800-5600 m. Flowering: July-October.
Medicinal uses: Phen Kamal is a well known medicinal plant of Kashmir. Whole plant is used in treating boils.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Padar, J&K & Hemkund, Uttarakhand.

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