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ative Photo: Gurcharan Singh
Common name: Rice, paddy, sake, sea-grass matting • Assamese: ধান Dhan • Bengali: ধান Dhan • Hindi: चावल Chaval • Kannada: akki, bhatta • Malayalam: ari, navaranellu, nellu • Manipuri: Phaou • Marathi: tandul, bhat, pendha • Oriya: dhano • Sanskrit: dhanya, dhanyah, garuda • Tamil: arishi, arisi, nellu • Telugu: biyam, biyyam, dhanyamu • Urdu: chawal • Mizo: Buh
Botanical name: Oryza sativa    Family: Poaceae (Grass family)

Rice is normally grown as an annual plant, although in tropical areas it can survive as a perennial and can produce a ratoon crop for up to 30 years. The rice plant can grow up to 3.3–5.9 ft tall, occasionally more depending on the variety and soil fertility. It has long, slender leaves 50-100 cm long and 2-2.5 cm broad. The small wind-pollinated flowers are produced in a branched arching to pendulous inflorescence 30-50 cm long. The edible seed is a grain 0.5-1.2 cm long and 2-3 mm thick. Rice cultivation is well-suited to countries and regions with low labor costs and high rainfall, as it is labor-intensive to cultivate and requires ample water. Rice can be grown practically anywhere, even on a steep hill or mountain. Although its parent species are native to South Asia and certain parts of Africa, centuries of trade and exportation have made it commonplace in many cultures worldwide.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh Photographed in Khalsa College Botanical Garden, Delhi.

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