FoI
Amphora Balsam   
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Amphora Balsam
ative Photo: Tabish
Common name: Amphora Balsam
Botanical name: Impatiens bicolor    Family: Balsaminaceae (Balsam family)
Synonyms: Impatiens amphorata

Amphora Balsam is a tall, erect, much branched annual herb, growing up to almost 2 m, with thick stems. Alternately arranged leaves are 7.5-15 cm long, elliptic to ovate, with finely toothed margin. Leaves often have pink edges and mid-rib. Leaf stalks are stipular glands. Flowers are borne in many-flowered racemes in the axils of upper leaves. Flowers are 3-4 cm long, pale purple, spotted in rose red. Lateral sepals are greenish, round, pointed. Lower sepal is cylindrical, 2.5 cm long, possibly reminding of an amphora. It is abruptly constricted into a thin, incurving spur, ending in a swollen lobule. Dorsal petal is circular, bilobed, notched at the top, with dorsal crest. Lateral petals are 2 cm long - upper one rounded, lower one larger and pendulous. Seed capsule is linear, 4 cm long, with blackish seeds. Amphora Balsam is a common plant found in Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Nepal and Pakistan, at altitudes of 2100-2400 m. Flowering: August-September.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh, Pankaj Kumar, Tanay Bose
Photographed in Dhanaulti, Uttarakhand.
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