River Beauty
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River Beauty
ative Photo: Tabish
Common name: River Beauty, Broad-Leaf Willow-Herb, Dwarf Fireweed
Botanical name: Epilobium latifolium    Family: Onagraceae (Evening primrose family)

River Beauty is a clumped perennial, forming large colonies by sprouting from woody rootstock. Stems are simple or moderately branched, becoming hairless to dense bristly, 4-70 cm tall, with a long nearly leafless branch-end spike-like cluster of prominent pink flowers, and numerous spirally-arranged narrow-elliptic leaves on the stem below. Flowers are up to 5 cm across, with rounded short-stalked petals; styles short, 4-8 mm, and deflexed throughout flowering. River Beauty is found on river gravels, margins of streams and damp slopes, in the Himalayas, from Afghanistan to C. Nepal, N. Asia, N. America, at altitudes of 3300-4500 m. Flowering: July-August.
Medicinal uses: The entire plant is used in Tibetan medicine, it is said to have a bitter taste and a cooling potency. Analgesic, antidote, anti-inflammatory, antipruritic, antirheumatic and febrifuge, it is used in the treatment of fevers and inflammations, plus also itching pimples.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand.

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