Psychotria nilgiriensis Deb & Gangop. var. astephana (J. Hk.) Deb & Gangop. - RUBIACEAE

Synonym : Psychotria congesta (Wt. & Arn.)

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Botanical descriptions Ecology Distribution Literature

Botanical descriptions :

Habit : Large shrubs or small trees ca. 4 m tall.
Trunk\bark : Bark grey, smooth; blaze white.
Branchlets : Young branchlets subterete to compressed, glabrous.
Leaves : Leaves simple, opposite, decussate; stipules intrapetiolar, sheathing, caducous and leaving scar; petiole 0.5-1.5 cm, planoconvex in cross section, glabrous; lamina 5-9 x 2-3.5 cm, obovate to oblanceolate, apex shortly and abruptly acuminate to acute, base attenuate - decurrent, margin entire and revolute, glabrous; midrib and secondary_nerves raised above; secondary_nerves 10-12 pairs, domatia present at the axils of secondary_nerves; tertiary_nerves broadly reticulate.
Flowers : Inflorescence terminal, in whorled branches terminating in cymes; flowers white, sessile.
Fruit& seed : Drupe, with two planoconvex pyrenes; seeds 1 per pyrene.

Ecology :

Undergrowth in high elevation evergreen forests between 2000 and 2300 m.

Distribution :

Endemic to the southern Western_Ghats – Anaimalai and Nilgiris.

Literature :

Taxon 31: 546. 1982; Gamble, Fl. Madras 2: 640. 1993 (re. ed); Sasidharan, Biodiversity documentation for Kerala- Flowering Plants, part 6: 232. 2004.

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