Yellow Colchicum
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Yellow Colchicum
ative Photo: Suresh Rana
Common name: Yellow Colchicum • Dogri: Barf-basant, Hirantutiya, Hiranyatuth, Surunjaan, Virkim-posh • Hindi: Hirantutiya • Kannada: Kaadige gida • Sanskrit: Hiranya-tuttha, Suranjana • Tamil: curinacanmiciri, curincan • Urdu: Suranjan shirin ﺳﹹﺮﻧﺠﻦ ﺷﻴﺮﻳﮟ, Suranjan talkh ﺳﹹﺮﻧﺠﻦ ﺗﻠﺦ • Kashmiri: Veir koem ﻭﻳﺮﻛﻮﺋﻢ
Botanical name: Colchicum luteum    Family: Colchicaceae (Colchicum family)

Yellow Colchicum is a perennial herb found in the Himalayas. Corms are ovoid, oblong, 1.5-3.5 x 1-2 cm, flattened at the base, with longitudinal groove on one side. Coat is brown to dark-brown, membranous. Flowers are yellow, funnel-shaped, 3-4 cm across. Tepals are 6, united below into a long, narrow tube, up to 9 cm long. Segments are linear to inverted-lanceshaped, 2-3 cm long, pointed to blunt. Stamens are 6, attached at the base of the tepals, not protruding. Filaments are 4-5 mm long, anthers yellow, linear, 1-1.5 cm long. Ovary is superior, trilocular. Styles are 3, threadlike, longer than the stamens, stigma minute. Leaves are 3-6, appearing at flowering time, linear to broadly linear, 10-20 cm long, 0.5-2 cm broad, tip blunt. Fruit is capsular, ovoid, up to 3 cm long, seeds numerous, spherical, 2 mm in diameter. Yellow Colchicum is found in the Himalayas, from Pakistan to Himachal Pradesh, at altitudes of 1000-2700 m. Flowering: February-June.
Medicinal uses: Yellow Colchicum is useful in the treatment of rheumatic swelling. A paste made with saffron and egg can be applied beneficially to rheumatic and other swellings. Dried and powdered root of the plant is useful in the healing of wounds. It should be sprinkled on the affected area.

Identification credit: Pravir Deshmukh, Suresh Rana Photographed in Kashmir & Lahaul Valley, Himachal Pradesh.

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