Red Nongmangkha
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Red Nongmangkha
E Native Photo: Gary Thingnam
Common name: Red Nongmangkha • Assamese: তিতাফূল Titaaphul • Bihar: Chuhai • Khasi: Dieng-soh kajut • Manipuri: ꯅꯣꯡꯃꯥꯡꯈꯥ ꯑꯉꯥꯡꯕꯥ নোঙমাঙখা অঙাঙবা Nongmangkha angangba • Tangkhul: Sipchang • Nepali: चुवा Chuwaa, तिते Tite • Maring: Shimrim • Mizo: Kawldai-par-eng
Botanical name: Phlogacanthus thyrsiformis    Family: Acanthaceae (Acanthus family)
Synonyms: Justicia thyrsiflora Roxb., Phlogacanthus thyrsiflorus

Red Nongmangkha is a shrub 3-7 ft tall. Leaves are large, lanceshaped, hairless, about 20 cm long and about 2 cm wide, tapering at both ends. Flowers are borne in thyrses 10-30 cm long, borne at branch ends, or on short lateral branches, on short flower-cluster-stalks. Sepals are 6-8 mm long, densely velvet-hairy, bracts 0.7-2 cm long, linear. Flowers are wide-tube-shaped, 2-lipped, orange-red, closely hairy. Tube is broad from the base, curved; upper lip nearly erect and the lower one spreading. Stamens are hairless or slightly hairy near the base of the filaments, style hairless. Capsule is 3 cm long, 4 mm wide, somewhat quadrangular, hairless, 12-14-seeded. Seeds are much compressed, circular in outline, densely hairy, hairs elastically spreading when moistened. Nongmangkha is found in subtropical Himalayas, from Garhwal to Bhutan and NE India, at altitudes up to 1000 m.

Identification credit: Sudhansu Sekhar Dash Photographed in Imphal, Manipur.

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