Travancore Balsam
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Travancore Balsam
A Native Photo: Shrishail Kulloli
Common name: Travancore Balsam
Botanical name: Impatiens travancorica    Family: Balsaminaceae (Balsam family)

Travancore Balsam is an annual, fleshy herb up to 30 cm tall, found growing on wet rocks. Stems are usually simple, rarely branched, hairless. Leaves are crowded and rosulate towards tip, elliptic, nearly pointed, rounded toothed, fringed with hairs in crenatures; leaf-stalk as long or longer than blade. Flower-cluster-stalks are 1-3, borne near branch-ends, erect, 2.5-5 cm long, 2-4-flowered; bracts green, subulate, lanceshaped, spreading. Flowers are umbelled, white, streaked with red or with pink patches near base, membranous. Lateral sepals are obliquely ovate, tapering. Lip is boat-shaped; spur short, stout, blunt or absent. Standard is small, concave. Distal lobes of wings are large, stalkless.Travancore Balsam is endemic to Southernmost hills of Southern Western Ghats in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, at an altitude of 1,100-1,500 m. Flowering: August-September.

Identification credit: Shrishail Kulloli Photographed in Kerala.

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