Unlucky Gentian
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Unlucky Gentian
P Native Photo: Sunit Singh
Common name: Unlucky Gentian
Botanical name: Kuepferia infelix    Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian family)
Synonyms: Gentiana infelix, Varasia infelix, Gentiana minuta

Unlucky Gentian is a perennials herb 2-5 cm tall. Stems are many, prostrate to rising up, slender, simple. Basal rosette leaves are absent or very small; leaf blade is triangular, less than 5 mm. Stem leaves are crowded, withering toward stem base; leaf-stalk 3-5 mm; leaf blade elliptic to ovate, 1.5-3 x 1.2-1.5 mm, papillate, base blunt, margin cartilaginous and scabrous, tip pointed to blunt, vein 1. Flowers are borne singly at branch-ends. Flowers are dark blue, tubular, 7-10 mm; petals ovate-elliptic, 3-3.5 mm, tip blunt; plicae auricular, 0.3-0.5 mm. Stamens do not protrude out. Flower-stalks are 2-3 mm, slender. Sepal-cup is shallowly cup-shaped, tube 2-2.5 mm; sepals slightly spreading, ovate, 1.8-2.2 mm. Capsules stalkless, ellipsoid, 8-10 mm. Unlucky Gentian is found in alpine meadows in the Himalayas to China, Bhutan and NE Myanmar, at altitudes of 4100-4500 m. Flowering: August-October.

Identification credit: Sunit Singh, Shabir Tumaily Photographed at Kanchani Tal, Uttarakhand.

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