Oblong-Leaf Daphne
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Oblong-Leaf Daphne
P Native Photo: Siddarth Machado
Common name: Oblong-Leaf Daphne
Botanical name: Daphne retusa    Family: Thymelaeaceae (Daphne family)

Oblong-Leaf Daphne is an evergreen shrub, 0.4-1.5 m tall, densely branched, branches bristly. Leaves are alternate, usually clustered at tips of branches; leaf-stalk absent to almost absent; leaf blade oblong, oblong-lanceshaped, or obovate-elliptic, 1.4-4 x 0.6-1.4 cm, leathery, both surfaces hairless. base wedge-shaped, margin curled, tip blunt or retuse and apiculate. Flowers are borne at branch-ends, usually in several flowered clusters, carried on flower-cluster-stalk about 2 mm, densely bristly. Flowers are fragrant; flower-stalk absent or almost absent, hairless. Sepal-cup purplish red below with paler purple-pink or white lobes; tube cylindric, 6-8 mm, exterior velvet-hairy; lobes 4, broadly ovate or ovate-elliptic, 6-9 mm, tip rounded to blunt, rarely tapering. Stamens are 8, lower whorl inserted at middle of sepal-cup tube, upper whorl just below throat; filaments about 0.5 mm; anthers oblong, about 1.5 mm. Drupe is red, nearly spherical or ovoid, 6-8 mm. Oblong-Leaf Daphne is found on shrubby or herbaceous slopes, from the Himalaya to China, at altitudes of 3000-3900 m. Flowering: April-May.

Identification credit: Siddarth Machado Photographed in North Sikkim.

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