Yellow-Tail Swan Flower
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Yellow-Tail Swan Flower
P Native Photo: Saroj Kasaju
Common name: Yellow-Tail Swan Flower, Yellow-Skirt Dancing Girl • Mizo: Ai-thing
Botanical name: Globba spathulata    Family: Zingiberaceae (Ginger family)
Synonyms: Mantisia spathulata

Yellow-Tail Swan Flower is a perennial herb and flowers for a very short time during the monsoon period. Stems are 30-60 cm high, purplish at base. Leaves are 0-25 x 3.5-5.5 cm, hairless, purplish beneath when young, becoming green in age. Flowers are borne in panicles 0-25 cm long on about 5 cm long flower-cluster-stalk; branches numerous, approximate, hairy; bracts about 1cm long, pale violet. Calyx is about 6 mm long; sepals ovate, about 2 mm long, tip tapering. Flowers are hairy outside; tube 1.5-1.8 cm long; petals 4-5 mm long, dorsal about 4 mm broad, laterals about 3 mm above the flower mouth, about 6 x 3 mm. Lip is obovate to spoon-shaped, 6-8 mm long, yellow, base wedge-shaped, hairy, tip divided into two 2-3 mm broad lobes. Anther filament, forming the neck of the "swan," is 1.5-1.7 cm long, curved; anther about 2 mm long, wings semi-lunar, about 1.5 mm long, crest quadrate, about 0.8 mm long. Ovary is oblong, pale violet. Yellow-Tail Swan Flower is found in Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Bangladesh, Myanmar, at altitudes of 1200-1500 m. Flowering: April-June.

Identification credit: M. Sabu Photographed in Kalimpong, West Bengal.

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