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aturalized Photo: Prashant Awale
Common name: Roselle, Hibiscus, Jamaica sorrel, Red sorrel • Angami: Gakhro • Hindi: Lal Ambari, Patwa • Manipuri: ꯁꯤꯂꯣ ꯁꯧꯒꯔꯤ Silo-sougree • Marathi: Laal-ambaari, tambdi-ambadi • Tamil: simaikkasuru, sivappukkasuru, shimai-kashuruk-kirai • Malayalam: polechi, puli-cheera • Telugu: erragomgura, erragonkaya, ettagomgura • Kannada: ಕೆಂಪುಪುಂಡ್ರಿಕೆ Kempupundrike, ಪುಳಿಚಕೀರೆ Pulichakire, ಪುಂಡಿಬೀಜ Pundibija • Bengali: chukar • Mizo: Lekhar-anthur • Assamese: Chukiar, Tengamora • Sanskrit: Ambasthaki
Botanical name: Hibiscus sabdariffa    Family: Malvaceae (Mallow family)
Synonyms: Hibiscus digitatus, Sabdariffa digitata, Hibiscus palmatilobus

Roselle is a robust branched shrub-like annual or biennial plant that gets 4-7 ft tall and almost as broad. Leaves are dark green leaves, about 6 in across, deeply dissected into 5 narrow lobes. The stems, branches, leaf veins, and leaf stalks are reddish purple. The hibiscus-like flowers are yellow and about 3 inches across. The sepals of the flowers are prominent, fleshy, bright red. Sepal cup is about 1 inch in diameter. Sepals of roselle are used in making juices, squashes, jellies, wines and pies. Roselle is native to tropical Africa, clutivated in many places. but has has escaped cultivation and become naturalized in tropical America and Asia. Flowering: October-November.

Identification credit: Prashant Awale Photographed at Luangmual, Aizwal, Mizoram & Surat, Gujarat.

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