Siang Lysionotus
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Siang Lysionotus
P Native Photo: Momang Taram
Common name: Siang Lysionotus
Botanical name: Lysionotus chatungii    Family: Gesneriaceae (Gloxinia family)

Siang Lysionotus is a climbing or creeping sub-shrub found growing on trees or on rocky-walls, 150-300 cm long, round, much branched, hairless, young stem green with purple irregular blotches, mature stem brown. It is named for Taro Chatung (1963-2019), the first and the most famous journalist of Arunachal Pradesh whose contribution in journalism for this remote state is immense. Flower are two-lipped, 3 + 2, anterior lip deeply 3-lobed, 0.6-1.2 cm long, nearly equal, ovate, rounded; posterior lip obscurely 2-lobed, 4-8 mm long, hairless, white-purplish with deep-purple reticulation, tube 1.6-2.3 cm long, slightly inflated upwards, 4-4.3 cm long, hairless, purplish with deep-purple stripes and 2 yellow elongated calli at throat alternating with anterior lobes. Stamens do not protrude out.Sepal-cup is divided into 5 sepals from base; each sepal slender-linear to linear- subulate, anterior 3 longer, 1-2 cm x 1-2 mm, posterior 2 shorter, or sometimes all equal, entire, narrowly tapering, hairless, purple. Flowers are borne in leaf-axils, 2-4 in each node, carried on slender stalks, 5-6 cm long, green with purple irregular blotches, attachment with flower-stalk prominently jointed at 3-4 cm. Flower-cluster-stalks not arising from leaf-axils are with a ovate to oblong prophyll (4-1 x 1-3 mm) at base. Leaves are mostly opposite, but may be alternate, even ternate or in whorl of 4; sometimes two leaves of normal shape and size are alternating with prophylls; 4 or more prophylls occur at every node in lower non-leafy part of branches. Leaf-stalks are 0.5-1 cm, hairless, purple, blade ovate-elliptic to rounded ovate, 7-20 x 5-12 cm, nearly entire to minutely toothed to obscurely sawtoothed, shortly with a tapering tail, base rounded to shallowly heart-shaped, generally oblique, lateral veins 4-8 on each side of midrib, above dark green, below whitish green with purple blotches, hairless, nearly leathery. Capsules are 10-12 cm long, linear, hairless, splitting longitudinally. Siang Lysionotus is currently (2020) known only from Upper Siang district of Arunachal Pradesh. Flowering: March-August.

Identification credit: Momang Taram Photographed in Upper Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh.

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