High Avens
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High Avens
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: High Avens • Nepali: बेलोचा Belocha
Botanical name: Geum elatum    Family: Rosaceae (Rose family)
Synonyms: Geum elatum, Acomastylis elata, Sieversia elata

High Avens is a pretty wildflower found high in the Himalayas. Yellow flowers are borne in 2-6-flowered clusters, at branch ends. Flowers are 2.8-3.5 cm in diameter, stalk velvety. Sepals are green, ovate-triangular, tip pointed. False sepals are linear-lanceshaped, minute, about 1/2 as long as sepals. Petals are yellow, broadly obovate, about twice as long as sepals, hairless, tip notched. Flowering stems are up to 40 cm tall, velvety. Leaves at the base are 12-24 cm long, including the stalk. Stipules are green, ovate-lanceshaped, herbaceous, margin entire. Leaf-stalk is 1-4 cm, velbety or hairy, rarely hairless. Leaves are broadly linear in outline, interrupted or compacted compound, with 9-13 pairs of leaflets. Leaflets are somewhat circular, 0.4-2.5 × 0.3-2.2 cm, closer ones are progressively smaller. Base is broadly wedge-shaped, margin irregularly toothed and hairy, tip rounded. Stem leaves are reduced and bractlike, oblong-lanceshaped, parted. Achenes are ovoid, style persistent. High Avens is found in the alpine meadows of the Himalayas, in Bhutan, Kashmir, Nepal, Sikkim and parts of China, at altitudes of 3500--5400 m. Flowering: June-August.

Identification credit: Gurcharan Singh Photographed enroute to Bumla Pass, Arunachal Pradesh.

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