Elegant Cestrum
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Elegant Cestrum
P Introduced Photo: Narendra Joshi
Common name: Elegant Cestrum, Purple cestrum, Red Cestrum
Botanical name: Cestrum elegans    Family: Solanaceae (Potato family)
Synonyms: Cestrum purpureum, Cestrum rubrum, Cestrum smithii

Elegant Cestrum is a shrubs with stem copiously velvet-hairy. Leaf-stalk 6-12 mm; leaf blade ovate or elliptic, about 8 x 3 cm. Inflorescences are erect, at branch-ends or in leaf-axils, congested racemose panicles; bracts ovate, minutely woolly, 4-5 mm. Flowers are odorless, flower-stalks about 1 mm. Calyx is narrowly bell-shaped, 6-8 mm, hairless, unribbed; teeth about 3 mm, fringed with hairs. Flowers are red, pink, or violet, about 2 cm, expanded upward, abruptly contracted at throat, hairless; lobes deltoid, about 2 mm. Filaments hairless, unappendaged, slightly bent at point of insertion. Fruiting calyx not splitting. Berries are dark pink, spherical, 0.8-1.3 cm. Seeds about 8. Elegant Cestrum is vegetatively very similar to Cestrum fasciculatum. However in Cestrum fasciculatum the flower tube is densely hairy outside, usually scarlet, occasionally rosy purple. In Cesterum elegans the flower tube is hairless and rosy magenta or deep rose. Elegant Cestrum is native to Mexico, cultivated for ornamental purposes.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Pelling, Sikkim

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