Clustered Coneflower
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Clustered Coneflower
P Native Photo: Angela Pangkam
Common name: Clustered Coneflower • Mizo: Ramting, Tu-mau
Botanical name: Strobilanthes glomerata    Family: Acanthaceae (Acanthus family)
Synonyms: Goldfussia glomerata, Ruellia glomerata, Ruellia nutans

Clustered Coneflower is a subshrub up to 1 m tall, having leaves of variable shapes and sizes. Flowers are clustered in heads; bracts variable in size and shape. Flowers are purple, 4-6 cm long, somewhat swollen, outside velvet-hairy with gland-tipped trichomes, inside hairless. Flower tube is basally cylindric and about 2 mm wide for 0.6-1.6 cm then bent to about 90º and gradually widened to about 1.7 cm at mouth. Petals are ovate, about 4 x 7 mm, tip flat. Calyx is about 1.5 cm, 5-lobed almost to base; sepals 10-13 x about 1.5 mm, slightly unequal, outside velvet-hairy with purplish trichomes especially apically, inside hairless. Stamens are 4, included. Ovary is hairless, style about 3 cm, hairless. Stems and branches are 4-angled to nearly round, bristly. Leaf-stalks are 0.6-3 cm, densely velvet-hairy; leaf blade elliptic, broadly elliptic, or narrowly ovate, 5.5-19 x 2.7-10 cm, smaller of pair about 1/5 size of larger one, both surfaces densely velvet-hairy with purplish trichomes, secondary veins 5-7 on each side of midvein, base oblique, rounded, and decurrent onto leaf-stalk, margin sawtoothed with shallow widely spaced teeth and fringed with hairs with red multicellular trichomes, tip tapering. Capsules are spindle-shaped, about 12 x 3 mm, hairless, 4-seeded. Seeds ovate in outline, about 2 × 2 mm, densely velvet-hairy. Clustered Coneflower is found in Eastern Himalayas, at altitudes of 1000-1500 m. It is found in NE-India, Myanmar and China. Flowering: August-October.

Identification credit: Hussain Barbhuiya Photographed in Pasighat, Arunachal Pradesh & Cherapunjee, Meghalaya.

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