Balsam: Four discovered species of Balsam

Four discovered species of Balsam
Impatiens Haridasanii
  • It was found from Pongchan.
  • It was named after Haridasan (a former scientist at State Forest Research Institute, Arunachal Pradesh).
  • The species is characterised by small pure yellow flowers and hairy leaves.
Impatiens pseudocitrina
  • It was discovered from Anjaw district.
  • It has bright yellow flowers with small red spots on the throat and a long spur at the back.
  • The species name denotes the similarities with I. citrina.
Impatiens nilalohitae
  • It was discovered from the Lower Dibang valley.
  • It grows to a height of more than one meter.
  • It has dark purple flowers with pale yellow throat and green stalk.
  • The name nilalohitae denotes the dark purple color in Sanskrit.
Impatiens roingensis,
  • It was found growing in Roing and Upper Siang.
  • The plant has clustered white flowers with yellow patch on the mouth and hooked spur.
Balsam
  • These are commonly known as jewel weeds because of the diverse color of the flowers.
  • These are distributed throughout the Eastern Himalayas and the Western Ghats, Sri Lanka, South East Asia, Africa and Madagascar.
  • The genus is scientifically named as Impatiens, signifying the impatient nature of the fruits which explode suddenly when touched.
  • These grow in rich moist soil.
  • These are highly endemic.
Threats
  • Balsams face a threat from the fast-changing landscape of the region.
  • Road widening works, deforestation and other development activities are posing a threat to the natural habitat of the new species.
Importance of Balsam
  • Botanists have emphasised that balsams have immense horticultural importance.
  • Studies on hybrids of the plants have been undertaken in parts of the country to produce flowers that can sustain in different environmental conditions.
  • Different hybrids can be created from wild balsam species, so it is important to know the actual number of balsam species in the wild.
Section : Environment & Ecology

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