Himalayan Sapria
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Himalayan Sapria
ative Photo: Kanshouwa Susie
Common name: Himalayan Sapria • Mizo: Lei-par
Botanical name: Sapria himalayana     Family: Rafflesiaceae (Rafflesia family)

Himalayan Sapria is a rare and interesting root parasite plant on the roots of plants of grape family. It is at the brink of extinction due to incessant human interventions in the natural forest environment, and has been included under the endangered category in the Red Data Book of the Botanical Survey of India. It is related to the better known Rafflesia. The flowers of Himalayan sapria are 20 cm across, unisexual, bright red in colour covered with sulphur-yellow spots. They appear above the ground and have a putrid odour. Flowering shoot is short, erect and unbranched. Buds are globose and have white and pink bracts. Flower remains in its blooming stage for 2–3 days and after that it slowly splits open and becomes dark in colour and subsequently decomposes slowly. Fruits are swollen and crowned with perianth. The seeds are of the size of a grape fruit and blackish-brown in colour. Himalayan Sapria was first reported from Arunachal Pradesh, and is also distributed in Assam, Manipur and Meghalaya. At a global level, Himalayan Sapria has been reported only from northeastern India and Thailand. Flowering: December-February.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Machi village, Chandel distt, Manipur.

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