Lavender-Leaved Leucas
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Lavender-Leaved Leucas
A Native Photo: Saroj Kasaju
Common name: Lavender-Leaved Leucas • Hindi: हल्कुसा Halkusa, गुमा Guma • Kannada: ಗಂಟುತುಂಬೆ Gantu thumbe, ಹೆದ್ದುಂಬೆ Heddumbe • Malayalam: രുദ്രപുശ്പമ് Rudraspushpam, തുമ്ബാ Thumba • Manipuri: ꯃꯌꯡꯂꯝꯕꯨꯝ Mayanglambum • Marathi: Kuva • Telugu: Pulatumni
Botanical name: Leucas lavandulifolia    Family: Lamiaceae (Mint family)
Synonyms: Leucas linifolia, Leucas malabarica

Lavender-Leaved Leucas is an annual herb, up to 40 cm tall; branches finely velvet-hairy. Leaves are 4-7 x 0.6-1.3 cm, linear-lanceshaped, base narrowed, margin subentire, tip pointed, hairy on veins and on margins; leaf-stalk 4-5 mm long. Flowers are borne in dense, separated clusters, in leaf-axils. Bract are 5-6 mm long, linear, hairy. Calyx tube is 4-5 mm long, tubular, prominently oblique, slightly curved, velvet-hairy, shortly 8-toothed, one slightly longer. Flowers are white; tube 2-3 mm long, 2-lipped; upper lip 1-2 mm long, lower 5-6 mm long, 3-lobed. Stamens 4, didynamous; filaments sparsely hairy. Ovary 4-celled; ovules 4; stigma 2-fid. Nutlets 4, minute. Lavender-Leaved Leucas is found in Indo-Malesia and East Asia. It is found in the Himalayas, from Nepal to NE India, at altitudes up to 1000 m.
Medicinal uses: Leaf juice is used to treat stomach complaints. It is also applied to poisonous insect-bites. The paste of tender shoots is applied to relieve headache.

Identification credit: Karuna Kanta Das Photographed in Siliguri, West Bengal.

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