Tian-Shan Gentian
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Tian-Shan Gentian
ative Photo: Krishan Lal
Common name: Tian-Shan Gentian
Botanical name: Gentiana tianschanica    Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian family)
Synonyms: Gentiana regelii, Gentianodes tianschanica

Tian-Shan Gentian is a perennial herb, up to 15-35 cm tall, hairless, with stout stringy roots. Stem is simple, reddish brown, enveloped at base with old leaves. Basal leaves are longer than stem leaves, arranged in rose-like pattern, 2-10 cm long, 1.0-5.0 cm broad, linear-oblanceolate or lanceolate, margin slightly reflexed, entire-scabrulous, acute, univeined. Stem-leaves are much smaller, 1.75-53 x 03-1.5 cm, lanceolate-oblanceolate, entire, purple rimmed, pointed, sheathing at base, sheath 1.0-1.5 cm. Flower are borne in a loosely clustered, few flowered cyme. Flowers are bell-shaped, 1.25-3 cm long, small-long stalked. Sepal cup is half the length of the flower, split lobes being unequal, smallest, up to 0.5 cm long, all linear, long-pointed, toothed. Flowers are dark blue or sky blue, 1.25-3.0 cm long, tube much longer than lobes, 1-2.5 cm long, petals 2.5-3 mm x 1.75-2.5 mm, ovate-obovate, entire, acute-acuminate, plicae 0.1-0.3 x 0.1-0.20 cm, lanceolate, acuminate. Stamens 5, filaments slender, adnate at half the length of corolla, winged at base, anthers dorsifixed, oblong, somewhat sagittate at base. Ovary lanceolate-elliptic, style short, stigma bilobed. Nectaries at base of ovary. Capsule ellipsoid-lanceolate. Seeds numerous, brown, reticulated. Tian-Shan Gentian is named after the Tien Shan Central Asia mountain range. It is found in the Himalayas and China, at altitudes of 3200-3900 m. Fl. Per.: July-September

Identification credit: Krishan Lal
Photographed in Kinnaur Distt, Himachal Pradesh
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