Sikkim Knotweed
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Sikkim Knotweed
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Sikkim Knotweed, Sikkim potherb • Nepali: ठोट्ने Thotne, टुक्नु Tuknu • Manipuri: ꯂꯩꯕꯨꯡ ꯊꯔꯥꯝ Leibung tharam • Angami: Gazie
Botanical name: Koenigia mollis    Family: Polygonaceae (Knotweed family)
Synonyms: Polygonum molle, Aconogonum molle, Persicaria mollis

Sikkim Knotweed is an erect, 2-3 m tall, softly hairy, branched, perennial herb or undershrub. Stem is often dichotomously branched, round, hairy, rarely hairless. Leaves are 7-18 cm long, 3.0-6.0 cm wide, elliptic-lanceolate, velvety above, hairy below. Ochrea are ovate, tubular up to 5 cm long, membranous. Flowers are borne in a large, richly branched, thyrsoid, velvety panicle, at branch ends. Flowers are 3-3 mm across. Tepals are 5, creamy white, 1.5-3.0 x 0.5-1.2 mm, oblong-inverted-lanceshaped, blunt. Stamens are 8, with long threadlike filaments. Ovary is 0.5-1.5 x 0.25-0.5 mm, trigonous, styles 3 with head-like stigmas. Nuts are included within the reddish black fleshy tepals, exserted up to half or one third of its lengths, forming a baccate fruit, 2-3 x 1-1.5 mm, trigonous, brown, shining. Sikkim Knotweed is found in C. and E. Himalayas, Garhwal to Assam, eastward to China. Flowering: July-September.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Lachung, Sikkim.

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