Nepal Cinquefoil
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Nepal Cinquefoil
ative Herb Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Nepal Cinquefoil, Crimson Cinquefoil • Dogri: तरोहड़ चाह Tarohad Chaah • Hindi: डोरी घास Dori Ghas, रतनजोत Ratanjot • Kashmiri: रतनजोत Ratanjot Source: Names of Plants in India
Botanical name: Potentilla nepalensis    Family: Rosaceae (Rose family)
Synonyms: Potentilla bicolor, Potentilla coccinea, Potentilla bifurcata

A bank of blooming Nepal cinquefoil is one of the most beautiful sights in the Himalayas. This flower grows at heights of 2100-2700 m from Kashmir to Nepal. It is found in meadows, light forests and verges of paths and fields. There are more than a dozen varieties of cinquefoil growing in the hills, most of them yellow, orange or dark red. This seems to be the only one with rosy pink flowers. The Nepal cinquefoil has five heart-shaped petals of a deep rose-crimson color and measures about 1-2 cm across. A mass of stamens crowds the centre of the flower. The plant is between 20-90 cm high and has slightly hairy stems. The five ovate, toothed leaflets are arranged finger-fashion or digitately. The upper leaves are composed of three leaflets. The colour of this flower varies from crimson to rose to orange in some areas. Many garden cultivars have been developed from this lovely potentilla. A decorative design known as the cinquefoil- likened to the petals of the flower- with five cusps is often used in windows and arches as a motif. Flowering: June-September.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Dhanaulti, Uttarakhand & Kufri, Himachal Pradesh.

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