Blueberry Myrtle
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Blueberry Myrtle
ative Photo: Krishan Lal
Common name: Blueberry Myrtle • Hindi: bains, gaunta • Jaintia: dieng ching • Nepali: Kali kath
Botanical name: Myrsine semiserrata    Family: Myrsinaceae (Myrsine family)
Synonyms: Myrsine semiserrata var. brachypoda

Blueberry Myrtle is a small tree or large shrub, up to 5 m tall, with hairless branches. Leaves are lanceshaped or elliptic, 5-12 cm long, 1-1.5 cm broad, shortly toothed to nearly entire, usually hairless. Leaf-stalks are 2.5-7.5 mm long. Flowers are 3 mm across, reddish to white, in dense fascicles in leaf axils. Flower-stalks are 1-2.5 mm long. Sepals and petals are 4-5. Stigmas are 2-3-lobed, with flat, spreading, frilly lobes. Fruit is round berry about 6 mm across, bright blue to reddish-purple, fleshy, edible. Blueberry Myrtle is found in the Himalayas, from Pakistan to NE India, Tibet, Burma, W. & C. China, at altitudes of 1200-2700 m. Flowering: November-April.

Identification credit: Krishan Lal Photographed in Sirmaur Distt, Himachal Pradesh.

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