FoI
Heart-Leaf Swertia   
Foto info
Heart-Leaf Swertia
ative Photo: Anne Thingnam
Common name: Heart-Leaf Swertia • Hindi: Charaita
Botanical name: Swertia cordata    Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian family)
Synonyms: Ophelia cordata

Heart-Leaf Swertia is an annual herb 1-2 ft tall. Stems are erect, 4-angled, with wings on angles, branched. Basal leaves wither soon. Stem leaves are stalkless, ovate to ovate-heart-shaped, 0.8-2.3 cm long, 0.5-1.2 cm broad, base heart-shaped and nearly stem-clasping, margin rough, tip pointed, veins 3-5. Flowers are borne in narrow, dense, many-flowered thyrses 13-40 cm. Flowers are 5-merous. Flower-stalks are 3-10 mm long, channeled. Sepals are lanceshaped to ovate-lanceshaped, 5.5-7 mm long, margin rough and usually slightly curled, tip pointed. Flowers are white, with purple veins, 1-1.5 cm in diameter. Petals are narrowly elliptic to elliptic-lanceshaped, 0.8-1 cm long, tip pointed. At the base of each petal, is a circular greenish, viscous spot. Stamen filaments are about 5 mm long, anthers ellipsoid, sometimes arrow-shaped, about 5 mm. Style is short, distinct; stigma lobes capitate. Capsules are ovoid-ellipsoid, 6-8 mm. Heart-Leaf Swertia is found in the Himalayas, from Kashmir to Bhutan and NE India. Flowering: September-October.

Photographed in Dhanaulti, Uttarakhand.
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