Lachen Henckelia
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Lachen Henckelia
P Native Photo: Momang Taram
Common name: Lachen Henckelia
Botanical name: Henckelia lachenensis    Family: Gesneriaceae (Gloxinia family)
Synonyms: Chirita lachenensis, Chirita clarkei, Chirita umbricola

Lachen Henckelia is a perennial herb with stems absent or prostrate and rooting at nodes, finely velvet-hairy. It is named for the Lachen region in Sikkim. Leaves are 2-8, basal, sometimes on stem and alternate or opposite, widely spaced; leaf-stalk 2-18 cm x 1-2 mm; leaf blade ovate to narrowly ovate or rarely oblong, 5-14 x 3.4-9 cm, herbaceous, above finely velvet-hairy, base oblique, margin toothed to sawtoothed, tip pointed to blunt or abruptly tapering; lateral veins 6-8 on each side of midrib, prominent. Flowers are borne in 1-4-flowered cymes, carried on flower-cluster-stalk 4.5-17 cm. Flower-stalks are 2-4 cm. Sepal-cup is 0.9-1.2 cm, 5-parted from near base to 5-lobed from near middle; tube 1.6-7 mm; sepals equal, lanceshaped-linear to ovate, 3-10 mm, margin entire. Flowers are white or tinged pink to blue, 3-4.5 cm, outside finely velvet-hairy and sometimes hairy, inside at tip sparsely finely velvet-hairy; tube funnel-shaped-tubular, 2-3 x 0.8-1.2 cm; upper lip 6-10 mm; lower lip 1.2-1.5 cm. Filaments are about 8 mm, anthers fused by entire upper surfaces, about 3 mm, hairless; staminodes 2, about 2 mm. Pistil is 1.6-2.5 cm. Lachen Henckelia is found in Bhutan, NE India, N Myanmar, Sikkim, China, altitudes of 2300-3100 m. Flowering: June-August.

Identification credit: Momang Taram Photographed in Mishmi Hills, Arunachal Pradesh.

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